Kerkini is a unique wetland. It was created through the construction of a dam against the flow of the river Strymonas and its waters were used for irrigation and controlling flooding.
It is surrounded by well-forested mountains (Beles, Krousia). The lake supports aquatic plants of interest which include formations of floating plants (Trapa natans, Nymphaea alba, Nymphoides peltata, Potamogeton gramineus) or submerged plants (Ranunculus fluitans, Ceratophyllum demersum, Myriophyllum spicatum and other). Formations of reeds that are prevalent are of Phragmites australis, Typha angustifolia, Scirpus lacustris and other, which border the river and canals. Several trees of the species Tamarix, standing on their own or in small clusters, grow sporadically around the lake.
It is a wetland of great national and international importance (Ramsar Convention). It sustains a rich population of birds in regards to the number and variety, including rare and endangered species. The wetland is extremely important as a feeding area for predatory birds which nest in the nearby forests, as a hibernation point and intermediary stop for migrating birds as well as an area for reproduction for a large number of birds.
The growing biological productivity, the existence of rare plants (Marsillea quadrifolia, Utricularia vulgaris and other) and animal species in the area and the forestal ecosystems which surround it, increases its ecological value even more. In the running waters of the area, around the village of Agistro, there is a population of wild trout, Salmo macrostigma, which is threatened by the neighbouring cultivation of foreign trout, Oncorhynchus mykiss.
Area: 10995 hectares