Environment

The National Parks In Bulgaria: Role In Protecting The Country's Incredible Biodiversity

Bulgaria is one of the most biodiverse countries in Europe and its rare and endangered flora and fauna are protected within the national parks of the country.

Bulgaria is a nation located in southeastern Europe and is bordered by the countries of Romania, Serbia, Macedonia, Turkey, and Greece. The country also has a coastline on the Black Sea to the east and encompasses an area of 110,994 square km.

Rich Biodiversity Of Bulgaria

Bulgaria is one of the European nations boasting of a high biodiversity. Nearly 35% of Bulgaria’s territory is occupied by forests where some of the world’s oldest trees like the Granit oak and the Baikushev's pine grow. Over 3,800 species of flora grow in the country, 170 of which are endemic and 150 endangered. Brown bears, rock partridges, owls, the eastern imperial eagle, and the Eurasian lynx are some of the iconic fauna of Bulgarian wilds.

Role Of National Parks In Protecting The Biodiversity Of Bulgaria

Bulgaria’s rich biodiversity is conserved within the three national parks, 16 biosphere reserves, and 11 nature parks of the country. The country houses some of the largest Natura 2000 areas in the country. These areas occupy 33.8% of the country’s land area. The Ministry of Environment and Water of Bulgaria is responsible for the implementation of the national policy concerned with the governance and management of Bulgaria’s protected areas. The Vitosha Nature Park was the first nature park established in the country in 1934. The Pirin National Park is the first national park of Bulgaria established in 1962.

3. Pirin National Park -

#3 Pirin National Park -

The 403.56 square km Pirin National Park is located in southwest Bulgaria and includes a large section of the Pirin Mountains. The national park is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The elevation of the park varies between 950 m to 2,914 m. The park hosts 118 glacial lakes which enhance the natural beauty of the landscape. Almost 95% of the forest cover in the park includes coniferous forests. 45 mammalian species, 159 avian species, 11 reptilian species, 8 species of amphibians, and 6 fish species inhabit the Pirin National Park. The park is a major tourist destination in Bulgaria. It provides an interactive exhibit, a 30-seat projection room with multimedia equipment, tourist accommodations, 20 marked hiking trails, and other tourist facilities.

2. Central Balkan National Park -

#2 Central Balkan National Park -

The Central Balkan National Park is located in the heart of the country where it is nestled in the Balkan Mountains. The elevation of this national park varies between 550 m to 2376 m. The park, established on 1991, is one of Europe’s biggest and most treasured protected areas. Rare and endangered fauna and human communities are hosted by the Central Balkan National Park. 56% of the area of the park is covered by forests featuring 2340 species and subspecies of flora. 2387 invertebrate species, 6 fish species, 224 bird species, 14 species of reptiles, and 59 mammalian species live in the Bulgarian national park.

1. Rila National Park -

#1 Rila National Park -

Rila National Park, encompassing an area of 810.46 square km is Bulgaria’s biggest national park. It was established on February 1992 and has elevation ranging between 800 m and 2925 m. The Musala Peak, the highest peak in the Balkan Peninsula, is within the boundaries of this national park. The Maritsa River and Iskar River, two major rivers of the region are part of this national park. 120 glacial lakes are housed in the park. 66% of the national park’s landscape is occupied by forested land. 48 mammalian species, 20 reptilian and amphibian species, 5 fish species and a great diversity of invertebrates live in the Rila National Park. 282 species living in the national park are endemic to the region.

The National Parks In Bulgaria: Role In Protecting The Country's Incredible Biodiversity

RankNameAreaEstablished
1Rila National Park810.46 km²1992
2Central Balkan National Park716.69 km²1991
3Pirin National Park403.56 km²1962

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