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ajuy islands canary treasures oldest one

Ajuy: one of the oldest treasures in the Canary Islands
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Radio Sintonia:

Ajuy: one of the oldest treasures in the Canary Islands.

Belonging to the municipality of Pájara and bordering the municipality of Betancuria there is a small fishing village called Ajuy. This enclave, located west of Fuerteventura, is characterized by the outcrop of the oldest geological materials of the Archipelago.



A geological gem
The Natural Monument of Ajuy has an area of 31.8 hectares and geographically is included within another Protected Natural Area, the Rural Park of Betancuria. It so happens that the Betancuria Rural Park is the largest protected area on the island, unlike the Ajuy Natural Monument, which is the smallest space.

Geologically this space has a special relevance, since it is where the oldest materials in the entire archipelago are located. On the cliff located on the northern margin of the Barranco de Ajuy, north of the town, you can see the outcrop of the Basal Complex, whose age ranges between 100 and 150 million years, having been formed, therefore, during the Cretaceous or time of the dinosaurs. If we compare this antiquity with that estimated to have the island, between 30 and 35 million years, it is still one more reason for its great scientific interest. These materials were generated during the separation of the African and American continents, coinciding with the formation of the Atlantic Ocean, also showing numerous more recent magmatic intrusions in the form of.

The footprint of climate and history
Subsequently, variations in sea level gave rise to the formation of a marine sedimentary deposit on which we can observe the presence of paleodunes from the Pliocene period that are located more than 14 meters above current sea level. There is no doubt that the existence of all these materials is of great interest when it comes to understanding in more detail the process of formation of the island of Fuerteventura.

The existence of fossils in marine and aeolian deposits is a record of great importance in order to interpret and know in greater detail the global climate changes that have occurred on the planet over the last few million years. Some of the most remarkable testimonies derived from these changes can be observed thanks to the decrease in sea level after the last regression. In addition, the fossils found mark the evolution of some of the marine organisms that were present at other times.

Flora and fauna
With regard to the species of flora and fauna present in the area, they currently do not differ from those of the rest of the coastal landscape of this sector of the island. As for the uses, it is worth mentioning fishing, as well as the practice of shellfishing on intertidal rasas. They also highlight the ethnographic and historical values related to the lime and mining industry, leaving many testimonies about these activities.

Fountain: Ministry of Environment and Territorial Planning of the Government of the Canary Islands
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