Case Study

Actions for the Promotion of Natural Resources of the WWF Guardiaregia-Campochiaro Oasis through the WWF Oasis Network

Contact name

Nicola Merola

Institution name

Oasi WWF-Riserva naturale regionale Guardiaregia-Campochiaro

Region & country

Regione Molise - Italia


Traditional actions and innovation. Creation at Guardiaregia of a WWF Oasis Visit Center with a room of over 200 sqm, where the main features of the Reserve are shown through multimedia tools (HD video projector, computers, monitors) and traditional tools (diorama natural environments, maps, images, nature educational games, explanatory tables on flora and fauna, laboratory with microscopes). Campochiaro hosts a visit centre dedicated to the deer (Deer Museum and School Laboratory) with adjacent fauna of 9 hectares with some European deer specimens. It has been produced an Official leaflet for free distribution in Italian and English languages with updated new edition published every two years. Presence in all channels of the Protected Areas Network managed by WWF Italia. Local Internet Platform with dedicated website: followed in 2017 by over 7,000 visitors with more than 20,000 pages displayed. YouTube Channel and Facebook Page.

WWF Oasis Alternanza Scuola lavoro Project; work camp

Photo by M. Marinelli

Winter hiking following wolf tracks

Photo by N. Merola

Background of the project

Natural areas with great potential, not enough protected by nature conservation rules and poorly known locally, as well.

Increasing the knowledge of that natural area outside through traditional systems and innovative platforms.

Solution and actions taken

The most important solution identified is the production of a guide of the management of the area: “Study for defining the management guidelines of the WWF Guardiaregia-Campochiaro Oasis”, in practice the Protected Area Management Plan drawn up in 2006 under the POR 2000-2006 mis. 1.7-B (ERDF co-funding). The Plan, although not approved for various reasons by the respective Municipalities of the protected area, today represents the guidebook for today’s and future layout of the Reserve.

  • Opening new trails such as the San Nicola and Lanario Nature Trail and retrieving existing trails throughout the territory.
  • Small recoveries of various paths with fences and bridges and restoration of some areas such as the Forra del Quirino near the village of Guardiaregia.
  • Exploratory educational areas of the protected area such as the Guardiaregia Reserve Visit Center and the deer fauna area at Campochiaro.
  • Putting in the area of informative tables with naturalistic panels.
  • Meetings and themed excursions: butterflies, migratory birds, bee and honey, officinal plants.
  • Major Scientific Conferences: Protected Areas, Reserve Management Plan, Protected Conservation, Protection and Problems of the Apennine Wolf, Environment and Legality.
  • For 20 years celebration of a “WWF Oasis Day” WWF Spring Spring Festival
  • Basic Guided Tours – School Tours – Theme Excursions – Summer Excursion Program with over 15 different proposals and a dozen excursions in the Winter Program
  • Carrying out of 23 different education projects environment with primary and secondary schools – Alternanza Scuola Lavoro
  • A dedicated Website and the use of Social Network Facebook and Twitter, YouTube Video Channels

Other institutions or parties involved

  • Municipalities belonging to the protected area (Guardiaregia and Campochiaro) – WWF Oasis (Protected Area Manager).
  • National Protected Areas such as the National Park of Abruzzo, Lazio and Molise.
  • University of Molise Studies, University of Tuscia of Viterbo and Researchers from various Italian Universities.
  • Local naturalist graduates – Extra regional cooperatives engaged in the naturalistic field such as COGESTRE in Penne (PE).
  • Volunteers from the WWF Molise.
  • Local Associations engaged in cultural heritage such as ME.Mo.
  • GAE titled hiking guides.
  • Local volunteers engaged in the protection of nature.


The WWF Oasis Regional Reserve Guardiaregia-Campochiaro is well-known today, also out of the region. The over 4500 annual presences, the result of steady growth in recent years, are made up of students, families, tour groups and individual visitors from various Italian regions. In order of attendance they come from: Molise, Puglia, Campania, Lazio and Abruzzo. There are also visitors from Northern Italy and visitors of Northern Europe who are among the most aware about the issues of protection.


Insufficient economic resources to fully implement all planned actions.

Lessons learned

In the promotion of natural areas, it is always necessary to innovate the way the message is transmitted through different channels: Scientific and Educational (University and primary and secondary schools) – Tourism promotion with agreements and contacts with Associations, Societies and Cooperatives operating in this sector.

Contact name

Nicola Merola

Institution name

Oasi WWF-Riserva naturale regionale Guardiaregia-Campochiaro



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