Si­cily day trips by BirdLife Malta for its mem­bers and for the BOV Sports & So­cial Club

Malta Independent - - LIFESTYLE & CULTURE -

Birdlife Malta re­cently or­gan­ised Si­cily day trips to Cav­a­grande del Cas­si­bile (Province of Syra­cuse), one of the more scenic land­scapes si­t­u­ated within the Hy­blaean Moun­tains (Monti Iblei), a moun­tain range in the south-east­ern side of the is­land.

One trip (Satur­day 5th Novem­ber) catered for BirdLife Malta mem­bers and friends and the other (Sunday 13th Novem­ber) for the Bank of Val­letta Sports & So­cial Club.

The Cav­a­grande del Cas­si­bile Na­ture Re­serve is of ge­o­graph­i­cal and arche­o­log­i­cal im­por­tance. The Re­serve cov­ers an area of 2,700 hectares in the re­gion of Avola, Sira­cusa and Noto. The river Cas­si­bile runs through the re­serve and over the mil­len­nia the river has cre­ated a se­ries of deep canyons stretch­ing for more than 10 kilo­me­tres.

The walks com­menced and fin­ished at Prisa-Car­rubella, the only path­way open to the pub­lic at the mo­ment. Other paths are closed due to a vast fire which some two years ago ren­dered other ar­eas dan­ger­ous and in­ac­ces­si­ble.

The trek cov­ered some 8km of wooded ar­eas through this fa­mous canyon where the Cas­si­bile river runs some 280 me­tres be­low form­ing streams and lakes in the process.

The area is rich in flora and in­cludes the pop­u­lar oak, wil­low, ole­an­der, ivy and fern among other plants and shrubs. Fauna in­cludes drag­on­flies, colour­ful but­ter­flies, ea­gles, kestrels as well as fresh wa­ter crabs and trout.

It was a very en­joy­able day for both groups which ended with vis­its to Ma­rina di Mod­ica and Poz­za­llo town cen­tre for one group and to the fa­mous choco­late town of Mod­ica for the other.

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