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Folder ... in Europe?

Europe is home to many species among witch about 260 recorded species of mammals, 480 birds, 85 amphibians, and 151 reptiles. Available data on species are often patchy and incomplete, affecting the quality status reports and the compilation of 'red lists' (EU 2010 biodiversity baseline). Some areas, like the Mediterranean and Caucasus, stand out for their species and genetic richness (see map), and are considered as 'biodiversity hotspots'.

Species population trends are mixed - some previously highly threatened species are starting to recover, others continue to decline at alarming rates, generally as a result of the disappearance or degradation of their habitats. As in other continents, the spread of invasive alien species is an increasing threat. Important ecosystems are at risk including forests, wetlands, species rich agricultural habitats, several dry and arid areas and some marine areas.

Table: Species richness of selected groups in the EU-27 (EU 2010 biodiversity baseline)

Species groups EU-27 Europe World
Amphibians 84 85 6000
Reptiles 141 151 8800
Terrestrial mammals (only EU-25) 179 219 5000

Marine mammals (only EU-25)

41 41
Birds 453 482 9900
Butterflies 451 482 20000
Dragonflies 135 138 5500


Map: Species richness in Europe (vertebrates and vascular plants) in proportion to countries’ surface area
(Screen capture of Europe's environment: The Third Assessment, 2003)
 

URL Europe's Environment - The Dobris Assessment - Chapter 9 (1995)
URL Europe's Environment - The Second Assesment (2001)
URL Europe's environment - The Third Assessment - Chapter 11 - Biological diversity (2003)
URL Europe's environment — The fourth assessment. Chapter 4: Biodiversity (2007)
URL Europe's environment — An Assessment of Assessments (2011)
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