Arrocampo Reservoir

(This article is a summary translation of Spanish article Embalse de Arrocampo of Wikipedia (es))

The Arrocampo Reservoir,[1] (embalse de Arrocampo or embalse de Arrocampo-Almaraz in Spanish), is located in the province of Cáceres, Extremadura, Spain.

It was created at 1976 to refrigerate the turbines of the Almaraz Nuclear Power Plant. The nearest municipalities are Almaraz, Romangordo, Saucedilla and Serrejón. The dam is on the Arrocampo River (arroyo Arrocampo), very close to where this little river joins the Tagus.

Arrocampo Reservoir
Presa principal del embalse de Arrocampo
Arrocampo reservoir dam
Arrocampo Reservoir is located in Spain
Arrocampo Reservoir
Arrocampo Reservoir
LocationAlmaraz, Romangordo, Saucedilla, Serrejón, Spain
Coordinates39°49′N 05°42′W / 39.817°N 5.700°WCoordinates: 39°49′N 05°42′W / 39.817°N 5.700°W
Native nameEmbalse de Arrocampo  (Spanish)
Managing agencyIberdrola, Endesa
Surface area776 ha (1,920 acres)

The Arrocampo reservoir as system to refrigerate the Almaraz Nuclear Plant

Embalse arrocampo (circulación agua)
Water circulation in Arrocampo reservoir

The refrigeration of the Almaraz nuclear power plant was the first reason for the construction of the reservoir.
The water is taken from the Tagus and cover a U-shaped circuit of 25 km which allows the cooling of the heat generated by the two nuclear reactors of the plant. (See the illustration of the water circulation in Arrocampo) (...) The walls of thermic separation (pantallas de separación térmica in Spanish) (PST) are 11 km long and 8 m high (...). The tops of these walls are used by great cormorants and great egret as standing, resting and sleeping areas.

The Arrocampo reservoir as a wetland

Embalse de Arrocampo
Arrocampo reservoir

-Phytoplankton and zooplankton (...)

Angling is often practiced on weekend and feast days. There are sometimes a lot of recreational fishermen at the principal access to the reservoir, near the local route Almaraz-Saucedilla.

-Common barbel
-Tench (Tinca tinca)

Ardea cinerea 2 (Marek Szczepanek)
The grey heron can be watched in Arrocampo

-Largemouth bass or black bass: this species is very common and the size is often spectacular.
-European eel ...

Before the creation of Arrocampo reservoir (1976), there were a lot of wild birds in lands of Almaraz, Saucedilla. White storks, cattle egrets, lesser kestrels ... are traditional birds of this area. Now there are two special protection areas: one is the parish church of Saucedilla (17 pairs of lesser kestrels on its walls and roofs) and the other one is all the Arrocampo reservoir.


Muro en el embalse de Arrocampo

Wall of thermic separation in the reservoir

Enea (embalse de Arrocampo)

Typha plants (bulrush, cattail) in Arrocampo

Caballos y embalse de Arrocampo

View of reservoir from a Saucedilla hill

Cormoranes en la PST de Arrocampo

Great cormorants on the wall of thermic separation (CNA phot.)

Pescadores en Arrocampo1

Anglers in Arrocampo

Plantas de enea en Arrocampo

Cattail plants

Mojón VP Arrocampo


Muro embalse Arrocampo

End of thermic separation wall

The Arrocampo reservoir as a Special Protection Area (SPA) for wild birds[2]

ZEPA Saucedilla
Information office of Arrocampo reservoir Special Protection Area at Saucedilla
Falco naumanni 2011-07-10 La Cañada
Lesser kestrel, protected in the walls and roofs of Saucedilla church
Cattle Egret (Bubulcus ibis) -walking
Cattle egret, very common in Arrocampo
Phalacrocorax carbo02
Great cormorant
Little Egret Reflection
Little egret
Ardea cinerea - Pak Thale
Grey heron
Purple Swamphen - Pukeko02
Purple swamphen: perhaps the symbol bird of Arrocampo reservoir

The Arrocampo ornithologic park (Saucedilla)

The Arrocampo ornithologic park is located in the municipality of Saucedilla, near the reservoir. It was designed by the ornithologist Javier Briz.

  • Monfragüe National Park: the proximity of this national park (...)
  • Route 1: Arrocampo: (...)
  • Route 2: Cerro Alto: (...)
Interior oficina información Saucedilla

Interior of the Information Office of SPA Arrocampo reservoir

Observatorio aves1

Bird hide

Mojón Parque Ornitológico de Arrocampo (Saucedilla)

Route 1 marker

Balsa Dehesa Nueva

Pool on Route 2

Observatorio aves Saucedilla

Bird hide

Cigüenas 31

White storks near the reservoir


  1. ^ El embalse de Arrocampo, 1996, Ed. Central Nuclear de Almaraz. This book is the basic reference of this article.
  2. ^ Birding in Extremadura, Ed. Junta de Extremadura Archived October 4, 2013, at the Wayback Machine


  • El embalse de Arrocampo, 1996, Ed. Central Nuclear Almaraz.
  • Almaraz, un entorno para admirar, by Javier Briz and Óscar J. González; Madrid 2011; Ed. Centrales Nucleares Almaraz-Trillo. Photographs book with extraordinary birds pictures of Óscar J. González, photographer and biologist. This book is not sold in bookshops but it is possible to get it at Centrales Nucleares de Almaraz-Trillo, in:

External links

Almaraz Nuclear Power Plant

Almaraz Nuclear Power Plant is a nuclear power station at Almaraz in Spain and uses the international Tagus River, that runs into Portugal for cooling.

It consists of two PWRs of 1011 and 1006 MWe.

List of dams and reservoirs in Spain

This is a list of dams and reservoirs in Spain by administrative division.


Saucedilla (Spanish pronunciation: [sau̯.θeˈði.ʎa]) is a municipality located in the province of Cáceres, Extremadura, Spain. According to the 2010 census (INE), it has a population of 859 inhabitants.

It belongs to the Campo Arañuelo County (Comarca del Campo Arañuelo), the capital of which is Navalmoral de la Mata.

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