The most recent part of the delta, which projects into the Adriatic between Chioggia and Comacchio, contains channels that actually connect to the Adriatic and on that account is called the "active delta" by the park authorities, as opposed to the "fossil delta", which contains channels that no longer connect the Po to the Adriatic (but once did). The active delta was created in 1604 when the city of Venice diverted the main stream, the Po Grande or Po di Venezia, from its channel north of Porto Viro to the south of Porto Viro in a channel then called the Taglio di Porto Viro, "Porto Viro cut-off".
Their intent was to stop the gradual migration of the Po toward the lagoon of Venice, which would have filled up with sediment.
The subsequent town of Taglio di Po grew around the diversionary works. The lock of Volta Grimana blocked the old channel, now the Po di Levante, which flows to the Adriatic through Porto Levante.
Below Taglio di Po the Parco Regionale Veneto, one of the tracts under the authority of the Parco Delta del Po, contains the latest branches of the Po. The Po di Gnocca branches to the south followed by the Po di Maestra to the north at Porto Tolle. At Tolle downstream the Po di Venezia divides into the Po delle Tolle to the south and the Po della Pila to the north. The former exits at Bonelli. The latter divides again at Pila into the Busa di Tramontana to the north and the Busa di Scirocco to the south, while the mainstream, the Busa Dritta, enters Punta Maistra and exits finally past Pila lighthouse.
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Courtesy of Comune di Porto Tolle - Assessorato al Turismo