L’étang at La Capelle is one of the few such natural fresh water wet areas in the French Mediterranean South, the second largest after Camargues. The only thing you won’t find in La Capelle are flamingoes…
The translation for « étang » is pond. But the area known as “l’étang de la Capelle” is larger than a pond. As the name implies, it is located in La Capelle-et-Masmolène, about 12 km from Uzès. It is a marshland area of about 320 hectares (roughly one square kilometer: 600 m wide, 1.3 km long) (790 acres) with a nice pond-type of 42 hectares in the middle.
It collects the rainfalls from all of the surroundings hills. Had it not been for the local farmers who have taken good care of it over the centuries, it would probably be filled today with silt and other debris. Its surroundings have long been a source of peat for the village people in La Capelle, Masmolène and Pouzilhac. The area is a wildlife heaven of some sort for over 200 animal species and 300 plants. It’s a stopover and shelter for migratory birds; as a matter of fact 176 bird species in all live or stay at the étang – not all migratory).
As for us humans, the étang is a heaven for fishermen and a very nice spot for family picnics! Watch the short film below to make up your mind!