Oued Laou catchment area (MOROCCO)

The site includes the whole river basin from the sources in the mountains (the Reef) to the river mouth in Northern Morocco. The climate changes from subhumid to dry from the mountains to the seaside in a few kilometers. The regime of the wadi (non-permanent river) is irregular throughout the seasons and the years. It is a biodiversity reservoir for the variety of habitats its presents. Freshwater resources are very rich and are used not only by local population but also by the nearby cities and agricolture thanks a dam. The water quality worsens from the upper to the lower basin.

Local population lives in sparse settlements (douar) and bigger villages, the most important being Oued Laou, a fishermen village whose population increases dramatically during the summer for holiday making visitors, coming both from the country and from abroad.

The site is experiencing development and there is a need of sustainable management plans for the area. The objectives of our research at this site was to conduct a baseline study of ecological elements, and to analyse the links and the trends of changes; to develop indicators of systems dynamics and impacts, and propose management options.


The town of Oued Laou
by Isabella Colombini

Afenti - Talambote
by João Neto


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