The Annotated Ramsar List: Switzerland


The Annotated Ramsar List of Wetlands of International Importance


switzerland.gif (1055 bytes)

The Convention on Wetlands came into force for Switzerland on 16 May 1976. Switzerland presently has 11 sites designated as Wetlands of International Importance, with a surface area of 14,688 hectares.

site; date of designation; region, province, state; surface area; coordinates
site; date de désignation; région, province, état; superficie; coordonnées
sitios; fecha de designación; región, provincia, estado; área; coordenadas

Note: the following abbreviations are used in the site descriptions:

IFP = site included in the Federal Inventory of natural landscapes, sites and monuments of national importance (Inventaire fédéral des paysages, sites et monuments naturels d’importance nationale).

OROEM = site covered by the Federal Ordonnance on nationally and internationally important reserves for waterbirds and migratory birds (Ordonnance fédéral sur les réserves d’oiseaux d’eau et de migrateurs d’importance internationale et nationale).

Bolle di Magadino.18/02/82; Tessin; 663ha; 46º09'N 008º52'E. Protected Area; IFP. One of the last-remaining intact, natural deltas in Switzerland. Habitats include reedbeds, marshes with tall sedges, Salix thickets, Alnus carr, and other riverine woodlands. The site supports a high biodiversity of flora and fauna and is an important area for several species of breeding and migrating waterbirds; it has also a significant landscape value. Human activities include nature conservation, forestry, agriculture, tourism, industry, and a civil and military airport. The surrounding areas include intensively cultivated land and urban zones which causes eutrophication of waters.The Fondazione Bolle di Magadino, in charge of the management of the site, carries out several revitalization projects ( Ramsar site no. 231. Most recent RIS information: 2004.

Fanel et Chablais de Cudrefin. 16/01/76; Berne, Neuchâtel, Vaud; 1,155 ha; 46º59’N 007º03’E. Nature Reserve; IFP, OROEM, Important Bird area. A lake embayment, including open water, reedbeds, marshland with tall sedges, grassland, riverine woodland, and Salix thickets. Artificial islands have been created to encourage nesting birds. Human activities include nature conservation, forestry, fishing, tourism (camping, water sports), and agriculture. The area is important for various species of breeding and wintering waterbirds.Ramsar site no. 79. Most recent RIS information: 2004.

Kaltbrunner Riet.09/11/90; St. Gall; 157 ha; 47º12'N 008º59'E. Protected Area; IFP. The last-remaining area of relatively unmodified marshland in the once vast Linth River floodplain. Habitats include reedbeds, marshland, and wet meadows. An important area for breeding and passage waterbirds as well as amphibians and dragonflies. The site plays an important role in regulation in particular during high water, by performing the function of reservoir. The site lies in an area of intensive cultivation. Observation towers and a environmental education house are present on site. Ramsar site no. 509. Most recent RIS information: 2004.

Klingnauer Stausee.09/11/90; Argovie; 364 ha; 47º35'N 008º14'E. Protected Area; OROEM; Important Bird Area. It consists of a storage reservoir of 170 ha on the Aare River created by the 1935 construction of a dam, marshes and alluvial forests seasonally flooded. Vegetation includes associated reedbeds, Salix thickets, alluvial and Fraxinus woodland. The site is an important feeding ground for ducks such as Anas strepera and, during migration periods, one of the most important resting places for waders in Switzerland. Human activities are nature conservation, power generation, forestry, and agriculture. A management plan was achieved in September 2001. Ramsar site no. 507. Most recent RIS information: 2004.

Laubersmad-Salwidili.02/02/05; Lucerne; 1,376 ha; 46°58'N 007° 59'E. Biosphere Reserve, Biogenetic Reserve. Several types of mountain swamps with low, transitional and raised bogs of national importance, between 1,060 and 1,900 meters asl, forming a mosaic with wet spruce forests and meadows. It supports rare animal and plant species dependent on these ecosystems and plays an important role in water retention. The presence of the Three-toed Woodpecker, the Capercaillie, the Black Grouse and the Lynx is noted on site. A management plan is implemented and work on raised bogs regeneration has been undertaken in 2004. Human activities include typical Swiss mountain pursuits of pasturage and silviculture, as well as cross-country skiing, hiking, mushroom and berry picking. Ramsar site no. 1444.Most recent RIS information: 2004.

Le Rhône genevois - Vallons de l'Allondon et de La Laire. 09/11/90; Genève; 1,929 ha; 46º12’N 006º09’E. Protected Area. A section of the Rhône River in and downstream from Geneva, including the shores of Lac Léman (Lake Geneva) and riverbanks within the city, and riverside areas of the Rhône and (following a significant site extension on 02/02/01) two small tributaries, extending from the lake southwestward to the French frontier. Habitats include reedbeds, grasslands subject to seasonal inundation, scrub and alluvial woodland. The area is of some importance for wintering waterbirds, but the key value is that it includes some of the last-remaining, relatively unmodified stretches of the Rhône in Switzerland. Given the proximity to the city, human activities within the site include walking, cycling, canoeing and rafting, and camping, and in the surrounding area, forestry, agriculture, livestock rearing, viticulture, and power generation. Ramsar site no. 506. Most recent RIS information: 2001.

Les Grangettes. 09/11/90; Vaud; 6,342 ha; 46°23’N 006°54’E. Protected Area; IFP, OROEM, IBA. Upper part of Lake Léman (Lake Geneva) and the natural part of the Rhône river delta, including open water, reedbeds, marshes, and riparian woodland. The site supports nationally rare fauna and flora, including amphibians, reptiles, grasshoppers, butterflies and several species of orchids. Various species of breeding birds include Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus, Black Kite Milvus migrans and large numbers of wintering ducks. Human activities include nature conservation, agriculture, fishing, limited forestry, gravel extraction, and outdoor recreation such as camping and swimming. A new bird watching tower has been opened for visitors in 2011. The surrounding areas are largely agricultural, urban, or industrial. Adjacent to the small lakeside city of Montreux, site of Ramsar COP4, 1990. (The site has been extended in 2011 from 330 ha to 6,342 ha). Ramsar Site no. 504. Most recent RIS information: 2011.

Niederried Stausee. 09/11/90; Berne; 297 ha; 46º59'N 007º15'E; Protected Area; OROEM. It comprises an artificial lake on the Aare River, created by the construction of a barrage in 1913, and stretches of the Aare and Sarine rivers. Vegetation includes associated reedbeds, tall sedge marshland, and Alnus, Salix and Fraxinus woodland. The site is important for wintering waterbirds, especially Anas strepera, Aythya ferina and A. fuligula, and supports a rich and diverse wetland flora. Human activities include leisure activities, agriculture, and hydroelectricity production. Main factors adversely affecting the site are the artificial regulation of water debits (absence of natural dynamism in the alluvial zone) and the water warming due to the nuclear power station in Mühleberg . Ramsar site no. 508. Most recent RIS information: 2004.

Rhonegletschervorfeld. 02/02/05; Valais; 317 ha; 46°34'N 008°22'E. IFP, Alluvial Zone of National Importance. The site includes the spur of ice of the Rhône glacier (source of the Rhône River) and the recent glacier foreland, between 1,750 and 2,485 meters asl. The flat alpine alluvial zone of Gletschbode contains the various stages of plant successions from the pioneer associations on raw ground up to the forests of larches and different types of vegetation developing on wet, moist and even dry grounds. The glacier foreland is an important place for the mountain avifauna, and 25 species of birds are breeding on site, among which are the Rock Partridge, the Black Grouse, the Rufous-tailed Rock-Thrush. In summer and autumn, the site is used for recreation (hiking, alpinism, ice grotto visit) and grazed by cattle on restricted areas. The Cantonal Service of the Forests and Landscape is in charge of the management of the site. Ramsar site no. 1445. Most recent RIS information: 2005.

Rive sud du lac de Neuchâtel.09/11/90; Fribourg, Vaud; 1,705 ha; 46º50’N 006º50’E. Protected Area, IFP, OROEM. The largest area of lacustrine marshes in Switzerland. Habitats include open water, reedbeds, wet grassland with tall and short sedges, and thickets of Alnus, Salix, Pinus and Fraxinus. Human activities include nature conservation, fishing, forestry, and tourism (especially camping and water sports). The site supports breeding and staging waterbirds and more than 40’000 birds in winter. It is important as well as for invertebrates, reptiles and amphibians.Ramsar site no. 505. Most recent RIS information: 2004.

Vadret da Roseg.02/02/05; Grisons; 383 ha; 46°25'N 009°52'E. IFP; Alluvial Zone of National Importance.The site consists of the glacier foreland, between 2,000 and 2,800 meters asl, common to the two glaciers Vadret da Roseg and Vadret da Tschierva and the alpine alluvial zone formed on the place of their retreats. It includes a lake and meanders of the Ova da Roseg, a stream originating from the spurs of ice of the two glaciers. The natural dynamism of the stream and the constant evolution of its meanders network create the conditions for a high biodiversity of vegetation to develop and also plays an important role by regulating the water level. A danger of flooding remains, however, because of possible water excess in the lake. Potential threats to the site include climate change, which could result in the complete melting of the glaciers. No further construction is allowed within the site. Ramsar site no. 1446. Most recent RIS information: 2005.

Back to top
Follow us 
Ramsar Awards 

The Convention today

Number of » Contracting Parties: 168 Sites designated for the
» List of Wetlands of
International Importance
2,186 Total surface area of designated sites (hectares): 208,674,247

Ramsar Secretariat

Rue Mauverney 28
CH-1196 Gland, Switzerland
Tel.: +41 22 999 0170
Fax: +41 22 999 0169
Map: click here

Ramsar Forum: subscribe