The shores of river Deva, between the populations of El Mazo and Buelles in the council of Peñamellera Baja, and the Eastern border with Cantabria, we can find one of the most beautiful fluvial fertile plains in Asturias. Considered a Natural Monument, the willow wood of Buelles is a close dense jungle, a place which allow us to enter through a natural path and deserves the most environmental respect.
The river Deva
It is widely known that willows grow best in deep and wet grounds. This particular habitat which allow us to walk by the shores of river Deva, also give us great shade as protection from the sun. In some places this shade is almost impenetrable when the forest reaches its highest density.
The river banks of the Asturian rivers used to be surrounded by very different kinds of forests and species and places of high agricultural productivity. Most of the forests were cut down and for this reason, this willow wood that still keeps itself alive and grows in the medium plots of the river Deva, is of extreme importance. All of this helps to build a low and fertile plain in the very best state of conservation, in accordance with old times.
The shores of large rivers such as the Deva, are the chosen places for the most resistant species of willows which could grow perfectly here forever. All this is the result of a long and hard adaptation process. A good example of the vitality of this kind of forest is the willow wood of Buelles which has been growing as a fort, trunk by trunk and step by step over the years. This forest has been defending itself thanks to the protection given by the dense willows bordering it and it is capable of with-standing the worst of the heavy rains. Behind this border we find the second line of willow trees, probably the biggest and best developed wood of all along the Cantabrian Coast.
In these forests the most dominant willow is the white willow (Salix Alba), species of great size. The insides of these forests have suffered from man’s devastation, because of the fertile floors. In Buelles, for instance, this deforestation has not been carried out, this place houses many interesting species from an environmental point of view.
Many people show great interest in the fauna living here. There are some populations of avión zapador (Riparia riparia), otters (Lutra lutra) and lampreas (Petromyzon marinus). All these species are included in the Regional Catalogue of Species in danger of extinction of the Asturian Fauna.
In addition, there are other interesting species that prove the good quality of these waters, such as the Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) and the desmán (Galemys pyrenaicus).
The town of Buelles
On the other side, the town of Buelles and other surrounding towns are not only attractive for their natural environments but for many more things. One of them has a vast latin americans’ culture. The wealth of this architectural patrimony make a visit very worthwhile.
Information of interestLocation: council of Peñamellera Baja.
The Natural Monument comprises the willows bordering both banks of the Deva River in the stretch of river between the towns of El Mazu, Narganes and Buelles, in the municipality of Peñamellera Baja.
Area : 52.29 has
Access : The N-621, from Panes to Unquera, through the towns of El Mazo and Buelles; AS-343, Villanueva (Ribadedeva) to Siejo (Peñamellera Baja), which runs along the left bank of the river, passes through the core Narganes.