Doe © Régis DESCAMPS - Cévennes National ParkDoe © Régis DESCAMPS - Cévennes National Park
©Doe © Régis DESCAMPS - Cévennes National Park
Live at the rhythm of the Cevennes nature!

Fauna and Flora Awareness

Discovery and observation for a reconnection to the heart of life.

The Cévennes offer breathtaking landscapes and harbor many treasures that must be preserved. During your stay, while hiking or at the water’s edge, take the time to observe the fauna and flora around you depending on the season, the weather or the time of day. We are often reminded of the importance of living in tune with the rhythm of nature, but daily life does not always allow us to take the time to look at it.

Each picture that nature offers is an opportunity to reconnect with ourselves and to become aware of the importance of protecting what surrounds us.

The Cevennes highlands

The Cevennes reliefs located in the north of the territory reflect the landscape identity of the Cevennes.The National Park is covered by 70% by the forest composed of beech, fir and chestnut trees as well as maritime pines planted in the past for the mining activity.

With this surface area, the Cevennes National Park is the most forested of the national parks. Many endemic species and species are protected there. The size of these wooded areas makes them particularly vulnerable to the risk of forest fires, especially during the summer. It is therefore very essential to adopt all year round, the right gestures during your hikes.

The communes of Concoules and Génolhac are located in the heart of the Park and are subject to the regulations of the heart of the Cevennes National Park.

Forest fire, let’s have the right reflexes

In France, 9 out of 10 fires are of human origin: in case of drought, heat wave or strong wind, a badly extinguished cigarette butt thrown out of a car window or on the side of the road, a spark in a field or a garden can be enough to devastate hectares of vegetation in only a few minutes.

The valleys of the Gardons

The area of the valley of Mialet, St Jean du Gard and Anduze is recognized for having an exceptional natural heritage. Natura 2000 and the Cevennes National Park work together to preserve the spaces and species that live here. The river is one of the assets of this part of the territory but every year in the summer season, it reminds us that nothing is taken for granted and that it is essential to preserve water resources and take care of the environment.

The species associated with the environments on which Natura 2000 pay particular attention are the otter, the beaver, dragonflies, the white-legged crayfish and the southern barb.

As for the Cevennes National Park, it frames canyoning through a manifesto for a reasoned practice that aims to preserve the canyons and their environment.

Do not hesitate to discover all the practices respectful of the natural environment and the signatories of this charter before going on activity.

The vineyards and garrigues

This part of the territory located in the South East of Alès Agglomeration is very different from the Cevennes landscapes that can be seen in the background.

Between the vineyards, the scrubland, the cliffs of Seynes and the Mont Bouquet which dominates the sector, the fauna and flora are very rich. The sector of Mont Bouquet is a natural area of ecological interest fauna and flora. The designation of a ZNIEFF is based on the presence of species or associations of species with high heritage interest. Look up and observe about fifteen species of birds that have taken refuge on this Natura 2000 site or that cross it during migration… From March to April, the luckiest among you, may be able to see the Egyptian vulture.

Another richness of the sector is located in Vézénobres with the House of the fig and its conservatory orchard. The latter is a duplication of the National Botanical Conservatory of Porquerolles with a vocation to preserve and perpetuate the different varieties of the emblematic fruit of the Mediterranean basin. The Conservatory Orchard is a haven of peace for biodiversity since it hosts nearly 1000 trees for a hundred species.

The team of the house of the fig very committed to the preservation of the environment has placed a good number of birdhouses in the orchard as well as shelters for Bats. Do not hesitate to discover this place and to be inspired by the good practices of the establishment.

The Plain of Alès

The plain of Alès has nothing to be ashamed of in its urban area because the city has obtained in 2020 the trophy of the “Golden Flower”, awarded unanimously by the national jury of the National Council of Cities and Villages in Bloom. This is the highest possible distinction that is awarded each year to a limited number of municipalities “4 Flowers” reaching a very high level in terms of flowering and enhancement of the living environment.

Between two activities, you can refresh yourself in the shady parks and flowery city:

  • Direction the floral park of the prairie to enjoy mainly in the spring of more than 300 varieties of camellias.
  • You can opt for the park of the Bosquet located in the city center and developed around the Fort Vauban.
  • Go to discover the parks of the museums of Colombier or the museum Pierre-Andre Benoît.
  • Opt for the Mediterranean park of Cornilhères, a refuge of 2.2ha of biodiversity in the city.
  • Finally, you can choose the park of the Tour Vieille, a magnificent green setting.

Did you know that the city of Alès has also been awarded the APIcité label for its approach to bees and wild pollinators?

The city has its own beehives, installed at the Park of the Camellias of the meadow. Each year the harvested honey is offered to incoming levels. Nice nod to the IGP Miel des Cévennes whose specificity and reputation are based on the diversity of the Cévennes flora gathered by the bees. It is essential today to preserve the pollinators who play a fundamental role and absolutely essential to nature and man. Nearly 90% of wild flowering plants need animal pollination for reproduction, yet the pollinator population continues to decline alarmingly.

How to act at your level during your stay in the Cevennes?

Avoid picking flowers;

Choose local honey producers;

Support tourism providers committed to sustainable development;

Observe the different types of pollinators (among others): bees (wild and domestic in apiaries), butterflies, birds or even bats.

How can you extend your approach when you get home?

Let wildflowers grow in your garden or plant some if there are none;

Remove pesticides;

Mow rather than mow;

I build an insect hotel ;

Supply yourself with wild and local plants;

Create diversified hedges, locally sourced, and without plastic mulch;

Conserve dead wood;

Establish scree slopes, dry stone walls.

To discover in detail the different species of the territory, do not hesitate to consult the Atlas of Biodiversity. Published in 2020, this book is a real bible for nature lovers.

Take a different look at the nature that surrounds you and take advantage of this stay to remember that you are a link in this biodiversity.

During your stay in the Cevennes, if you cross the path of a wild animal in distress, do not hesitate to contact the association Goupil Connexion – Wildlife Hospital:
04 67 42 63 16

The hospital’s mission is to collect, treat and rehabilitate wild animals in distress to release them into the natural environment in a concern for saving species.

Releases are organized regularly on the territory, in front of the public to raise awareness of the importance of living in harmony with wildlife.

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