The swampy Ebro Delta is located at the mouth of the river Ebro to the Mediterranean in the south of the autonomous region of Catalonia in Northeast Spain.
The river delta in the form of a triangle extends about 20 km in the Costa Daurada. Divided by the Ebro River is the northern part in the comarca of Baix Ebre, in the southern part of the comarca Montsiā. In the far east, just before the mouth of the river into the Mediterranean, the Ebro River and a tributary forms the island of Illa de Buda. With an area of 12.3 km ² it is the largest island of the Catalan mainland. In the south of the island la Banya on a sandbank with the delta connected. Like a wing extends to the north the Punta del Fangar Peninsula, with its shifting sand dunes in the Golf de Sant Jordi. The city Limestone forms the entrance to the Delta, in the center of the municipality is located Deltebre.
With an area of approximately 320 km ², it is according to the National Park Coto de Doñana is the second largest wetland in Spain and after the Nile Delta, the second largest delta in the Mediterranean area. 4,000 years ago, the history of the Ebro Delta, which owes its present form of agriculture (rice cultivation) began. By applying small irrigation canals with a total length of about 450 km of the centuries sediments to be deposited in the course of leading the Ebro to the Pyrenees, the Cantabrian coastal mountains and the mountains in central Spain with them. This created a little above the sea level lying flat swamp and marshland with sand dunes and lagoons with fresh water, overgrown with reeds.
The Ebro Delta is the largest rice growing region of Spain. In about 75 % of the area (20,000 acres ) of rice is cultivated and irrigated. The first cultivation of the crop goes back to the year 1609. Today, annually about 90,000 tons of rice are produced. In the summer, before the rice harvest, propagate the stems of rice plants as a green lawn over the Delta from. On the island of la Banya is obtained in salt mines salt from sea water. Protected by this island lies the marina and fishing harbor of Port de Sant Carles de la Rapita. The abundance of pike, perch, eels and catfish offers many fishermen 's livelihood. An important sector is the breeding of mussels in the bay of Port del Fangar. At the 70 artificial mussel beds which shellfish are grown and harvested.
About a third of the Ebro Delta was reported with a total area of 80 km ² in 1983 as a natural park ( Parc Natural del Delta de l' Ebre ). The entire river delta is a very rich breeding and resting area for many bird species, but it also serves as a base for wintering of migratory birds from Northern Europe. At a count in about 300 different native birds, migratory birds, ducks, herons, waders, gulls, coots and flamingos were counted. During the months of September and October, after the rice harvest, the bare marsh provides food for thousands of birds.