Aveto Valley straddles the provinces of Genoa (Liguria), Parma, (Emilia-Romagna) and Piacenza (Emilia-Romagna). In the province of Piacenza it includes the villages of Ferriere in Nure valley and Cerignale and Cortebrugnatella in Trebbia valley. The river Aveto runs through the valley and flows from Mount Caucaso (1245 m high) for about 45 Km before joining its waters, in Confiente area, with Trebbia river – of which it is the primary tributary. Ferriere village territory includes the high Nure valley and a small portion of Aveto valley. From the geological and geomorphological points of view this valley presents the resurfacing of a special typology of ophiolite called “serpentinite”. Ophiolite rocks, with their high percentage of iron and copper minerals, are oceanic crusts originated at the bottom of the ancient sea known to the geologists as “Ligure-Piemontese Ocean”, which from 150 and 45 milions of years ago extended from the European tectonic plate and the African one. An example of this is the Groppo Rosso.
The environment is dominated by the Ligurian Apennine and Piacenza Apennine reaching 1600-1800 m of height, with large grazing lands for cattle, still visible in the summer. There are also several trekking trails to explore the area. The most interesting from the point of view of flora and fauna are the Ciapa Liscia trails (1373 m) in Tribolata valley, with its lunar appearance, 1450 m high. Here you can see the wild orchid, while mountains – down below – are covered with beech trees.
Aveto valley fauna presents the typical breeding animals (farm), but also other species such as the badger, hedgehog, fox, boar, marten, wild cat and wolf. The avifauna includes birds of prey (owl, buzzard and falcon), restart, mountain swallow, finch, white wagtail, goldfinch, nutcracker, hoopoe, cuckoo and thrush.