Over 215,000 different species live in Europe, far fewer than in many other areas of the world. The continent is also home to over 2,500 different types of habitats.
Many of the different animal species now living in Europe face extinction, which would mean a major loss of the region's natural biodiversity. Of all the mammal species in Europe, 42% are threatened by extinction. For fish, the figure is 52% and for birds it is 15%.
Europe has 12,500 different plant species, 21% of which are currently facing extinction. Species in Slovakia, the Netherlands, and Romania are the most at risk to go
extinct. As a whole, Europe is more at risk to losing species to extinction than most other areas of the world.
In Northern and Eastern Europe, natural ecosystems tend to be better preserved. The Mediterranean Basin has greater diversity of species than anywhere else in Europe.
Many European countries are protecting their forest lands, in large part because of the biodiversity often found in forests. Since 1982, over 10 million hectares have been protected.
unique species are found in marine environments and along Europe's coastal areas. Unfortunately, many of these areas are not protected.
Because governments fail to protect marine environments, their natural ecosystems are being destroyed. Since 1976, France has lost 15% of its natural coastal environments, and more areas are being developed every year.