Discover Russia's Varied Flora and Fauna

Russia is an expansive country encompassing a wide variety of soil and vegetation zones. As such the flora and fauna of Russia are just as diverse. From tundra to forest, Russia's plant and animal life is tourist delight. Be sure to visit at least one of Russia's protected natural areas when touring the country. You are certain to be impressed by the unusual landscapes and amazing wildlife of Russia.

Russia's far-reaching northern region is referred to as arctic desert. This area sees little plant life, which is restricted to lichens and mosses. As this area takes in vast expanses of coastline the animal life, both birds and mammals are chiefly sea dwellers. Moving southward this area merges into the tundra which also has limited plants but is more diverse than the desert areas. Small animal species, like arctic foxes, lemmings and white hares, as well as reindeer, are predominantly found in the tundra zone. Further south is the forest zone, also known as taiga. These forests constitute about 50% of Russia's land. Russian wildlife residing in the taiga regions include moose, bears, lynx, reindeer, sable, hazel-grouse, owls and woodpeckers. The broadleaf woods are home to wild boar, deer, mink and marten. As you continue southwards you reach the forest-steppe zone. Grasses dominate here with small tracts of trees. This area then changes into excellent agricultural land. Mammals here include rodents, whilst birds in the area are eagles, the great bustard, cranes and skylarks.

Russia's flora is beautifully varied. The vascular plants of Russia number approximately 11 400 species made up of 1 488 genera and 197 families. Endemic plant species make up about 20% of these numbers. The flora of Russia also features 3 classes of mosses. 3 000 species of lichen are found in the country.

Russia's flora biodiversity has also resulted in diversity as regards its fauna. Unfortunately invertebrates, such as insects, have not been well documented in Russia, thus the inventory of fauna is incomplete. Vertebrates, however, have received greater attention and over 1 300 species have been documented. Mammals number about 276 species with 22 endemic to Russia. Birds have been counted at 732 species with only 1 endemic. 75 reptile species are documented as well as 27 amphibian species. Fish have been counted at 400 species. The highest levels or mammal diversity are found in southern Siberia, southern Far East and Northern Caucasus.

In this section you can find out more about Russia's plant-life, bird-life, Siberian tigers, Russia's leopards, wolves, elk, bears and wolverines. Be sure to engage in some eco-tourism whilst traveling in Russia.


User Comments & Reviews: 2 Comment(s)

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isabella - 2010-05-09 18:27:04

this did not help me at all, it was interesting!!!!!!

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marina - 2010-02-17 19:08:22

thnx a bunch for this info :)

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