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riserva naturale Cornate e Fosini
natureNaturalistic attractions

Cornate and Fosini Nature Reserve

A massif of over 1000 m composed of spectacular overhanging calcareous crags

Map for 43.14676,10.9782
The position and form of the mountains in this territory makes it an important destination on a national level. The altitude is well over a thousamd metres above sea level and if at first sight the arid grassland on the top of the mountain appears of little importance, in actual fact there are some most interesting elements to be observed, such as the Etruscan violet (found only here and on the slopes of the Amiata), the fritillary and the mountain-loving St. John’s Wort. Scientific research is under way with regard to the presence of the harrier eagle and the sparrowhawk (raptors which frequent the high castle walls of Fosini along with the wall-climbing wallcreeper, the wild cat (a rare direct sighting was reported in 1998) and the pine marten. Other animals found in the nature reserve are the roe deer, red deer, porcupine, weasel, polecat and stone marten. During the winter months also the accentor may be observed.

Lastly some rare insects have been registered: the hygrophilous invertebrate carabus, and the Brown hair-streak and Large Blue butterflies. Also the re-introduction of the autochthonous trout in the waters of Rio Riponti and Rio Meluzzo is currently under examination. Of historico-archaeological interest, the Castle of Fosini, the quarries of Rosso Ammonitico (well-known for furnishing the pink-coloured material for the flooring in the Cathedral of Siena) and the remains of an old twelfth-century silver-mine are particularly worthy of note. The Cornate are moreover considered one of the best locations for nocturnal observation of the stars, due to the reduced level of luminous pollution in the area.
In the silence of the Maremma woodlands
Montieri rises on the knoll of the same name and is covered by cool Chestnut forests. Its name comes from Mons aeris (or ‘Mount of Bronze’) because of the rich mineral deposits in the area. The name “Bolunnio”, given to a place near the town, indicates that Montieri was Etruscan, not Roman. The numerous tunnels that have recently come to light seem to confirm this origin. ...