Costa e Caldeirão do Corvo
Protected Area for the Management of Habitats or Species
This protected area, with about 777 hectares and the highest point at 720 metres, includes the majority of the island’s coastline and its islets, as well as the Caldeirão do Corvo central volcano.
It houses, in all of its extension, significant colonies of endemic flora and fauna species, as well as migratory birds.
In this protected area, there are also extremely important wetlands for the regulation of Corvo Island's hydrological system, namely inside the borders of the Caldeirão do Corvo and on the outside slopes facing south and east of the island's highest areas.
The main elements of this classified area are the Caldeirão, the Marco and Torrão islets, isolated from the island through marine erosion, the Ponta do Marco and imposing cliffs.
The formation of the Caldeirão volcano started around 1 to 1.5 million years ago, with the first phase of mostly explosive eruptions, followed by a sequence of basaltic s.l. lava flows. It has a collapse caldera with an average diameter of 2 kilometres, which interior is occupied by a lagoon and small scoria and spatter cones.
In turn, the Ponta do Marco is a sea-cliff with a complex volcano-stratigraphic sequence associated with the island’s main volcano and an intricate basaltic dyke system.
The inaccessible sea-cliffs present fractures on which grow vegetation particularly rich in rare species and which composition depend on the geomorphological nature of the sea-cliff. This habitat also has terrestrial slopes, walls with specialized comophytic vascular vegetation (that live on small amounts of soil in rocky discontinuities) and biotypes of epiphytic vegetation (that live on other plants, which serve as support).