The Monte Amiata is a mountain in Tuscany, high about 1700 m, situated in the AntiApennine Mountains.
There are two province on it, Grosseto and Siena, with respectively 8 and 4 municipality.
Many aspects of this mount are interesting, that attracting various typology of tourists.
First, it’s an extinct volcano (lava dome), that was active in the middle-top Pleistocene. This geologic aspect makes it rich of sources, localized between trachytic and carbonatic-clayey rocks. Obviously, there are a lot of volcanic rocks, scattered hither and thither.
Very remarkable are the mercury mines, among the most important in the world.
The lower part of the mountain is characterized by chesnut woods (Castanea sativa), most of these are Chestnut orchard. Here, the chestnut’s harvest is very important and, like other Italian’s regions, is necessary perform the biological control of the “chestnut gall wasp” (Dryocosmus kuriphilus).
The highest part of the mountain, instead, is entirely covered by beech forest (Fagus sylvatica), with some firs.
Here the nature predominates and offers spectacular scenary.
From a conservation viewpoint there are some SCI (Site of Community Importance), including : “Cono vulcanico del Monte Amiata”, “Monte Penna, Bosco della Fonte e Monte Civitella”, “Alto corso del fiume Fiora” and “Monte Labbro e Alta Valle dell’Albegna”.
These SCI have been established for the important presence of species, that are protected by European laws, mostly birds and bats. For example, Red kite (Milvus milvus), Merlin (Falco columbarius), Lanner falcon (Falco biarmicus), Eurasian eagle-owl (Bubo bubo), European roller (Coracias garrulus), Greater mouse-eared bat (Myotis myotis), European free-tailed bat (Tadarida teniotis) and many others.
No less important is the minor fauna, especially for the Northern spectacled salamander (Salamandrina perspicillata) and Apennine yellow-bellied toad (Bombina pachypus).
To increase the importance of this area there are wild wolves (Canis lupus) and is possible to see wolves in captivity in the “Parco faunistico del Monte Amiata”, from a special tower.
In Here, was been carried out many LIFE + project, like “LIFE Natura Biarmicus” and “LIFE Save the Flyers”.
Regarding the human history, there is a graffito dating bronze age, inside a cave (near Abbadia San Salvatore), that illustrate a bowman.
There are medieval castles, like inside Arcidosso and Montelaterone and other buildings from different ages, like Rocca Silvana near Selvena (IX century), baroque architecture in Castel Del Piano and much more.