In the northeast of Buenos Aires, in the town of Otamendi, the largest deer that inhabits South America, the Swamp Deer, is the main mammal of the National Park of the same name, a protected area located a few kilometers from the city of Buenos Aires, ideal for connect with nature.
The Campos del Tuyú and Ciervo de los Pantanos national parks are the only ones located in the Buenos Aires territory and the latter is the only one enabled, these days, to receive visitors.
Ciervo de los Pantanos, which was declared a natural reserve in 1990 and a national park in 2018, is located 13km from Campana, 22km from Zárate, and about 77km from the Federal Capital.
“The Swamp Deer is the emblematic species that is protected in the National Park,” Francisco Giménez, from the Department of Public Use, told Télam, who also indicated that “there are 956 species registered in the place, 49 of them are threatened, 103 species of vertebrates of special value and 845 native species registered.”
The swamp deer is the largest deer in South America and in Argentina it is found mainly in the Iberá Wetlands (Corrientes), and in the Paraná delta (Buenos Aires and Entre Ríos).
This species, which is one of the few amphibian cervids in the world, can weigh about 150 kilograms, reach about 2 meters from head to tail and a height of up to 1.30 meters at the withers; They have reddish brown and black fur on their legs.
The destruction of its habitat and hunting are the main threats faced by its populations, which is why in our country this animal is classified as in danger of extinction.
In addition to the star protagonist, in this National Park it is common to see gray foxes, capybaras, ferrets, nutria, various types of mice and reptiles, fish and about three hundred species of birds.
At the site, visitors can visit two interpretation rooms with information about the protected area and the other National Parks of our country, and follow self-guided trails, with interpretive and signposted signs.
During the walk the “Recuperando lo Nuestro” trail will appear, where native species are discovered; “Stories of the grassland”, which crosses an area known as the rolling Pampa grassland and where the origins of the place are described; “Guardians of the Barranca”, which allows you to get to know the riverside forest and its flood-prone slopes.
“The trails run through the Pampas grassland and ravine felling until they reach two viewpoints that are a balcony to the wetland, with unique views towards the heart of the National Park, the Laguna Grande, the place with the greatest biodiversity in the protected area,” said Giménez.
The place is considered a “Wetland of International Importance” and an Important Bird Conservation Area (AICA).
The grassland landscape is dominated by Cortaderas or foxtail, flechillas, carquejas and chilcas; the ravine through the natural felling forests, accompanied by elder, ombúes and espinillos; and in the lowlands flooded by sawdust, espartillos, cattails and wild straw.
The National Park has two picnic areas, restrooms, and on the second weekend of each month and on long weekends, an Eco Fair of local producers is held, with drinks and minutes sold.
In addition, throughout the year they receive and guide schools throughout the province and the City of Buenos Aires.
The Ciervo de los Pantanos National Park has free entry and is open every day from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
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