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3 regional natural parks

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3 Regional Natural Parks
- The Marais du Cotentin et du Bessin Regional
Natural Park,
- The Normandie-Maine Regional Natural Park,
- The Perche Regional Natural Park,

They cover 23% of the region's surface area

One of the specific aims of Normandy's three regional natural parks is the preservation of biodiversity and of the natural environment. The parks, however, are not nature reserves: together with environmental preservation, the parks also endeavour to associate development. They cover 23% of the region's total surface area. The Perche park is the most recent dating from 1998, following the Marais du Cotentin et du Bessin park which was created in 1991 and, finally the Normandie-Maine park which dates from 1975.

Key figures: 118 communes; 182,000 hectares; 77,000 inhabitants; 2 departments (Eure-et-Loire and Orne); created on the 16th of January 1998.
A preserved environment. The Perche park has a distinctive relief and geology offering great diversity (forest, bocage, prairies, ponds and marshy areas, grassland and heaths) and a specific natural environment and landscape.
The main characteristics of the Perche landscape are forests on high ground, sloping bocage and prairie valleys.
The Perche forests: 21% of the park's surface area, 93% of deciduous species including 66% oak, 493 plant species, 75 observed bird species and over 1,100 wild mushroom species.

The park in a few figures: 144 communes; 145,000 hectares including 30,000 hectares of damp prairies; 65,400 inhabitants; created on the 14th of May 1991.
The park's creation was the result of commitment by local authorities and representatives to counter the devitalisation of their territory and to strive for its development whilst preserving its natural heritage.
Achieving these aims relies on three main missions: managing and preserving the environment; contributing towards economic development; contributing towards territorial development. And on two specific themes: mobilising the local population; ensuring awareness of the territory's condition and its evolution.
A few examples of specific action: creation of a fishing route guide; planting advice for individuals; supporting agriculture in marshy areas; developing tourist activities; catering facilities and the positive development of the region's cob and thatched cottages; creation of bicycle routes...

The park in a few figures: 149 communes (+17 bordering towns); 235,000 hectares including 50,000 hectares of woodland and forest; 160,000 inhabitants; 4 departments (Manche-Mayenne-Orne-Sarthe); created on the 23rd of October 1975

A quarter of the park is covered by woodland and forest. The largest and most striking forests are Andaines, Écouves, Perseigne and Sillé. Cohabiting with wild boar, roe deer and hare, the stag is undoubtedly the forest's sovereign.
A contrasting bocage. The bocage covers the landscape over a multitude of land parcels forming an irregular mosaic: small and large parcels, dense or sparse hedgerows, pedonculate oak, beech, field maple, hazel and chestnut. In the Domfront area, high stem apple and pear trees.
Home to a rich fauna including some rare species (little owl, hairy beetles, scarab beetles...)

  • Zone marécageuse
  • Le Grand Vey
  • Pointe de Brévand
  • Marais du Cotentin