Paris, France — The Tour de France isn’t only about cycling. It is about biodiversity as well. The Biodiversity Tour of France is now in its 10th year. France Télévisions, which broadcasts the Tour, ASO, the organizers of the Tour de France in association with the National Natural History Museum (Le Muséum national d’histoire naturelle) present an exceptional natural site just before the leg of the race. The brief broadcast lasts for about one minute and 20 seconds and this year viewers are being made aware of no less than 21 spectacular nature reserves and natural and national parks on the path of the Tour’s 21 legs. They are introduced by Chloé Nabédian, the weather woman and journalist at France Télévisions. Since the race kicked off its first three legs in Denmark the Wadden Sea National Park was on the agenda replete with sweeping views of the sea and a Danish scientist explaining its eco-system and immense biodiversity for the park is home to wetlands of international importance and provides the habitat for more than 500 species of plants and animals and migration grounds for countless others like the Barnacle geese which migrate there to winter.
For the eighth leg of the Tour which runs from Dole in France to Lausanne in Switzerland viewers discovered the incredible wealth and biodiversity of the peatlands in the Jura Mountains Regional Natural Park which can count some 125 peatlands and 18 natural lakes sitting in the Jura Mountain Range on the French border with Switzerland. The 14th leg from Sainte-Etienne to Mende took us to the Regional Natural Reserve of the Gorges of the Loire, home to emblematic species like the Eurasian eagle-owl and the extremely rare and endangered dragonfly of the genus and species Sympetrum déprimé. The fifth leg journeyed from Lille to Arenberg and the biodiversity of the Regional Natural Park of Scarpe-Escaut was on the agenda with its astonishing ponds. Another biodiversity highlight was on for the 11th leg, a mountainous leg, from Albertville to the Col du Granon Serre Chevalier (this leg is known as the wall for the cyclists because of its difficulty) with the Natural Reserve of the Roc de Chère.
The Tour winds up in Paris on July 24th which will offer the opportunity to present the Botanical Gardens of the National Natural History Museum, which takes care of the scientific expertise of the programs.
« Through this partnership whose 10th anniversary is being celebrated, the Museum has an excellent opportunity to allow its vocation to be more widely known: that of creating awareness for the protection of the planet, biodiversity, geodiversity and its remarkable environments, » said Bruno David, the president of the Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle (The National Natural History Museum).
The biodiversity spots which are produced by the production company Gédéon Programmes are aired on the channels of France Télévisions from July 1 to July 24 but you can also tune in on one of the links below.
mnhn.fr/TDFbiodiversite20, letour.fr and france.tv/sport
©Trish Valicenti for The Gourmet Gazette
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