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Plants and Animals

Cities in UKRAINE


Plants and Animals


Ukraine has a very diverse flora; among others, more than 25,000 higher plant species, 4000 aquatic plants, 1000 lichens and 800 moss species and in addition 15,000 mushroom species.

Pine Forest, UkrainePine Forest, UkrainePhoto: Public domain

By comparison, Ukraine has 4523 species of vascular plants, Belarus 1460, Moldova 1762, Poland 2300. About a quarter of all flora species are found in the forests, about 20% on the steppes. Furthermore, more than a hundred tree species have been counted.

Ukraine has about 80 tree species, 280 shrub species, 985 annual flowers. Of the higher plant species, 600 are endemic, and there are also many rare and endangered plants, especially in the Carpathians and Crimea.

Ukraine can be divided into three vegetation types. The northern forest area consists of mixed coniferous and deciduous forest. Despite large reclamation projects, large marshes can still be found in these regions, with their own typical vegetation.

Carpathians, UkraineCarpathians, UkrainePhoto: Roman Zacharij in the public domain

The Carpathians and Crimea are even more forested and the vegetation there is also more varied than in the north. The Carpathians, for example, have about 2000 species of vascular plants and Crimea about 2200. The Crimean mountains have about 250 endemic species. In the Askaniva-Nova Nature Reserve a stretch of primeval steppe has been preserved with characteristic peat grasses. The edelweiss is the national flower of Ukraine.


Ukraine, including the Sea of Azov and the Black Sea, is populated by about 45,000 animal species, including 170 fish species, 17 amphibian species, 21 reptile species, 400 bird species, 108 mammal species, and about 35,000 invertebrates and insects.

Gox, UkraineFox, UkrainePhoto: Ryzhkov Sergey CC 4.0 no changes made

The animal life of Ukraine is typical of steppe and forest areas. Centuries ago, bears and wolves lived abundantly in the forests. Today, the fox is the most common predator in the entire country. Large mammals are wild boar and deer; smaller mammals are hares, red squirrels, hedgehogs and badgers.

Rivers and lakes are the habitat for muskrats, otters, beavers and coypu. On the steppes live many ground squirrels and numerous small rodents. There are not many snake species, but there are poisonous snakes in the swamps, including the Orsini viper and several harmless species of ring snakes.

Steppe Eagle, UkraineSteppe Eagle, UkrainePhoto: Sumeet Moghe CC 3.0 no changes made

The steppe eagle is one of the largest birds and other birds of prey in different regions are hawks, falcons and owls. Swallows, eastern bluebirds and starlings occur in large numbers.

There used to be many goldfinches in winter, but warmer winters and air pollution have reduced their numbers considerably. Wild and domestic pigeons can be found in the cities, in the forests we regularly see cuckoos and magpies.

The lakes, streams and reedbeds of rivers find many species of ducks and geese a good home.

In the rivers and lakes of Ukraine, despite the often lousy conditions, there are about 200 species of fish: including pike, perch, zander, carp, gudgeon and crucian carp.

Crucian Carp, UkraineCrucian Carp, UkrainePhoto: Viridiflavus CC 3.0 no changes made


Mixed forests:

newt, eel, crucian carp, pike, bream, frog, grass frog, adder, grass snake, lizard, wood goose, black goose, partridge, black stork, snipe, sandpiper, woodcock, woodpecker, thrush, tit, hawk, mole, beaver, hare, wild boar, otter, deer, wolf and wildcat.

Forest Steppe:

newt, carp, pike, bream, steppeadder, ground squirrel, partridge, hawk, fox, lark, badger, marten, wild boar, bat, muskrat, roe deer.


green toad, water snake, steppe viper, lark, steppe eagle, crane, partridge, hare, coypu, ermine, hamster, field mouse, mouflon, fallow deer.

Black Woodpecker, UkraineBlack Woodpecker, UkrainePhoto: Alistair Rae CC 2.0 no changes made


newt, black woodpecker, squirrel, wild boar, otter, deer, wolf, lynx, wild cat and European bison.


lizard, Crimean gecko, seagull, rock dove, nightingale, vulture, deer, mouflon, Danube herring, horse mackerel, bream, carp, terrapin, swan, stork, greylag goose, duck, cormorant, otter and beaver.


Bassis, V. / Ukraine
Marshall Cavendish

Corona, L. / Ukraine
Lucent Books

Hove, P. ten / Schets van Oekraïne
Stichting Platform Samenwerking Nederland-Oekraïne

Minbuza Stichting Platform Samenwerking Nederland-Oekraïne

Otfinoski, S. / Ukraine
Facts on File

CIA - World Factbook

BBC - Country Profiles

Last updated May 2024
Copyright: Team The World of Info