Montenegro has a remarkably rich plant and animal life due to the great topographic variation, different climates and the geographical position on the border between different ecological zones. The country has 7,000–8,000 vascular plants (of which about 400 endemic species), 483 mosses and lichens, 2,000 fungi, 1,200 freshwater algae, 300 marine macroalgae, 60 freshwater fish, 410 marine fish, 38 reptiles, 18 frogs, 325 birds and 65 mammals.
Mixed forests in the Dinaric Alps
According to COUNTRYAAH, most of Montenegro is located in the central Dinarisk-Hellenic mountain range system and in the southernmost part of the mixed forests that extend through Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and to Slovenia. Significant parts consist of karst. In the alpine zone there are edelweiss and several endemic plants, including the genus Edraiaranthus in the family bell plants. In this zone enjoys birds Alpine accentor, horned lark, white-winged snowfinch, rock partridge, Alpine Chough, Water Pipit and wallcreeper, and this one often finds balkangems (Rupicaʹpra rupicaʹpra balcaʹnica). In the high forests, spruce, fir, black pine and mountain pine dominate, while mixed forests with beech, deer, ash and five species of oak take over at lower levels. Here you will also find several endemic trees, such as Macedonian pine and Balkan maple (Aʹcer heldreiʹchii). In the forests brown bear, wolf, wild boar and a rare subspecies of lo – balkanlo (Lyʹnx lyʹnx martiʹnoi)) with only around 100 remaining individuals, of which 10-12 animals are estimated to live in Montenegro in the border areas of Albania and Kosovo. Among the birds can be seen peat, boar, gray woodpecker, three-pointed woodpecker, pearl owl and ringtrast. There are several interesting areas for amphibians and reptiles, such as the lakes of Mount Prokletije (the highest mountain in the Dinaric Alps) near the border with Albania with mountain newt (Ichthyo’saura alpe’stris), Albanian pool frog (Pelophy’lax shqipe’ricus), Greek Frog (Ra’na grae’ca) and several lizards special to the southern Balkan Peninsula, such as the recently described endemic species Dinarolaʹcerta monteneʹgrina. Durmitor National Park in the northeast of the country is the most famous.
Illyrian deciduous forests
On richer soils, you will find Oriental offspring (Capinrpinus orieʹntalis), five species of oak, real chestnut with several tree species, while stone oak and elephant numbers are more common in the coastal zone. Typical Mediterranean species include mastic, strawberries, several cistros (genus Ciʹstus), myrtle and olive trees. Up to 10–20 percent of vascular plants are endemic. In the coastal karst areas, you will find mainly snake eagle, hawk eagle, eagle noise, blue eagle, stone eagle,rock nut awake, master singer and mediterranean stone splash. In February 2015, the first finds of olm from limestone caves were published in the coastal zone of Montenegro. Olm (Proʹteus anguiʹnus) is an eel-like amphibian that lives its entire life in underground caves and therefore has reclusive eyes. The species is found along the entire Dinaric mountain range, especially Slovenia and western Croatia. Lovćen National Park in the southern part of the ecoregion is especially famous for its richness in frogs and crawfish, such as alpine larger water salamander (Triʹturus caʹrnifex), a subspecies of yellow-bellied bell frog (Bombiʹna variegaʹta), sandwormand several rare lizards with limited distribution in the Balkan Peninsula. The species of Greek land tortoise (Teʹstudo hermaʹnni) is found along the entire coastal zone.
Southeast Adriatic basin
Montenegro is located on the watershed between the Mediterranean and the Black Sea, where the rivers in the west flow into the Mediterranean and in the east via the Danube to the Black Sea. The western Mediterranean is the richest, with around 60 different freshwater fish such as Adriatic trout (Saʹlmo obtusiroʹstris), grayling and other salmonids. The fishiest lake is Skadar (Scutari) on the border with Albania with around 40 species, including eel and herring, which migrate between the lake and the Adriatic Sea. Damage is the country’s largest lake and best known for its rich bird life with nesting species such as moored pelican, dwarf cormorant, pipe drum, dwarf rhombus, Night heron, squacco heron, glossy ibis, spoonbill and ferruginous dykan death during wintertime collected up to half a million water birds in the lake with coot, teal, pochard, tufted duck and black-necked grebe as the most common species. Lake Sasko and the coastal salinas at Ulcinj are two other important bird sanctuaries, where, among other things, wad-cool hedges and flamingos occur regularly.
Upper Danube Basin
In the easternmost part the rivers flow towards the Black Sea. Here the fauna is much poorer species as the area was covered with ice during the recent ice age. Thus, only around 30 different freshwater fish live here. The most famous river is Tara on the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina. Here is a 1300 meter deep canyon, which is the deepest in Europe. The spectacular landscape is threatened by plans for hydropower development.
Montenegro has an attractive coast with sandy beaches, cliffs and islands, and in several places there are extensive underwater beds with neptune grass (Posidoʹnia oceaʹnica), which are important for many marine animals. The most famous place is the Gulf of Kotor, which is sometimes called Europe’s southernmost fjord and which belongs to the most well-studied parts of the coast. Here you will find fish such as menola (Spicaʹra maeʹna), rose mullet (Muʹllus barbaʹtus), red pagella (Pageʹllus erythriʹnus), hake, slush oil and barley mackerel. Several species of dolphins are found regularly, especially dolphin, streaked dolphin and boar. Neglected bay turtle and mushroom turtle occur in several places each year, and monk seals were formerly along the coast, but are now rarely found.