Lake Garda is inhabited by more than 30 different fish-arts, with the most important fish called CARPIONE, the famous TROUT OF LAKE GARDA (salmo trutta carpio), a salmon trout, eating a special sort of plankton, which is only to find in this lake. Nowadays CARPIONE has become very rare and you will be a lucky devil, finding this delicious fish in a restaurant Another species is a salmon trout, named “Lavarello” (coregonus Forma hybrida). Scarce is also the salmon trout, called TROUT BLUE (salmo trutta L.), which can reach a weight about 15 kg. Then there are many carps, named Cavedano (Leuciscus cephalus cabeda Risso) or SCARDOLA (Scardinius erythrophthalmus L.), at least BARBO (Barbus barbus plebejus V.). Then we can find TINCA (tinca tinca) and the little silver fishes, named ALBORELLAS, a very rare sort. (al burnus al burnus alborella de Filippi). The most important fish is named ALOSA (alosa fallax lacustris Fatio), better known as “May fish”. Often to find is EEL (anguilla anguilla), also to meet in Mincio River, but today two dikes stop the fish from swimming into the river. We have to name the big fish PIKE (exos lucius), then River Pike (perca fluvialis), BOTTATRICI (lota lota) and at least SCAZZONI (cottus gobio), they use to hide themselves under the stones nearby the beach. In general Fish Fauna has suffered very much during the last years by pollution and the continuous contamination of water and air. The mountains are HABITAT, the place, where most of all the animals are living ,near Lake Garda. You can find all kinds of vertebrates, typical sorts for the Alp-zone. There are the spotted Salamander, diverse sorts of FROGS and TOADS. Not so high up in the mountains you can see even WALL LIZARDS, in the higher places there are MOUNTAIN LIZARDS. Here live also a lot of SNAKES, diverse types called BIACCO or MELANICA (colubro d Esculapio ) which can arrive at a length about 2 m . Then we can find WATER SNAKES, able to swim in the Lake Garda. At least there are two kinds of toxic snakes : the famous VIPER and the terrible CROSS VIPER. During the last years Lake Garda can show a great recovery of BIRD FAUNA, especially water birds are increasing. SEAGULLS (larus argentatus) adore flying behind the naves, but too, there are many sorts of water-birds, even swimming underwater (Kormorans, Svassi and Tuffetti ). Everywhere you can see coloured DUCKS, and timid SEA FOWLS. A lot of BIRDS OF PRAY are living in this territory and often you can observe the beautiful BROWN KITE flying over the dark blue waters. High up in the sky you can see varied species of FALCONS, for example the careful TOWER FALCON, the crafty MOUSE FALCON and the majestic KING EAGLE (aquila chrysaetos). So many LITTLE BIRDS are living and nesting in the forests round the lake: blackbirds, starlings, titmice, cuckoos and oak birds. In the higher forest you can hear the sound of hard-working WOODPEEKERS, everywhere you can see little SPARROWS, lovely ROBINS and TITMICE with caps. All year long on Lake Garda there are living species like “gallo forcello” and the superb “gallo cedrone”, rare birds, known only by biologists. MOUNTAIN FAUNA offers a lot of STAGS and IBEXES, here you can find nice MARMOTS and in the Natural Park “Parco dei cervi”, nearby Prada, you can observe sometimes HERDS OF DEERS, rabbits, hares squirrels, mice, hedgehogs and badgers, not to forget VOLPES and MARTENS.Very rare to see is PRECIOUS MARTEN.
CLIMATE AND VEGETATION
The powerful water quantity of Lake Garda – a volume of about 49 cubic km – has a fatal climatic influence on the whole territory round the lake. The weather is mild in all seasons of the year. The temperature is higher than in other territories and therefore the life on Lake Garda is more pleasantly. They have a hot and dry summertime, “underpinned” by violent thunderstorms, specially in August; in wintertime rarely they have cold and frost, nearly the whole time it doesn’t rain, only in the southern parts of the lake they have sometimes fog. That is why naturally Lake Garda has a rich, plentiful and various vegetation: here you can find trees, bushes and plants, which normally grow in other climate zones. This kind of “Flora” is named FLORA INSUBRIA, a Celtic name. People, which lived here 500 years B.C. When we climb up, on to the Monte Baldo mountains, wee meet another fold of vegetation, the “Mountain Flora”. Indeed, along the beach there grow olive trees, commanded by the thermophils of the dry heat and the humidity of a subtropical climate. Here also are growing special kinds of trees (astragali, artemisie, cisit, terebinti, tassi) the bay-trees, the oak-trees and the evergreens, which grow on the rocky hills, in SAN VIGILIO and in MALCESINE. When we continue climbing up, till 400 – 800 m, we can find forests of oak-trees, too there is the black oak-tree and some ash-trees. In humid zones there are also much chestnut-trees. Then follow a fold of deciduous trees with beech trees, walnut trees, yew trees and maple trees. Sometimes you can find also some red-beech trees, normally living at a height of 1000-1200m. Always higher and higher there are the rare red fir-tree and even the white fir-tree. In 1700m there grow the first “mughi” (rare art of pines) and other coniferous trees. Here begins the real alp territory with fit carpets of “rhododendron” bushes and all kinds of alp flowers. Here we have poppies, “sassifraghe”, “ranunolacee”, ecc. Therefore the Monte Baldo mountains just in the botanic literature is called the “HORTUS ITALIAE” – which means the GARDEN OF ITALY. On the Bresciana side of Lake Garda we can find both at the coast and in the mountains the same vegetation like on the other side. The mountains here are not so high (the TREMALZO mountains reach about 1975m) and the coast is full of ravines and gulkies. During the last glacial area fit oak forests, mixed with fir-trees and beech-trees, came into being, at the southern side of the see and on the hills “Colline moreniche”. Nowadays you can find these kinds of forests only in special and rare zones, because the climate has become too dry or too humid. One of these special forests is the BOSCO FONTANA, nearby MANTOVA, which has suffered this climate changing very much. In the southern part of the lake we must tell you about the beach vegetation, here grows the water reed, butt more and more it will be destroyed by the “anthropocentrical” influence.