Wildlife of Ukraine
When one thinks of Ukraine, wildlife does not necessarily spring to mind as it would when thinking about a country such as South Africa. However, Ukraine has a number of protected areas and National Parks all aimed at preserving its natural splendors. Ukraine has quite a diverse landscape providing a number of habitats for a variety of species. Wildlife in Ukraine is certainly not scarce. Forest wildlife in Ukraine attracts many bird watchers keen to view fascinating bird species.
Ukraine can be divided into four flora zones which are Mediterranean, steppe, forest-steppe and forest. Beech trees are found throughout the western area of the forest zone. In the north of the forest region you will find pine, linden and oak trees whilst spruce is common in the northeast. The forest-steppe zone features grassland dotted with trees such as oak. In the steppe zone there are mostly grass plains which become more dry in the very south. Through the Mediterranean zone there are deciduous as well as evergreen grasses and shrubs.
Much of Ukraine’s wildlife can be found in specific plant zones. The forest zone is home to red deer, elk, roe deer, squirrel, wild boar, foxes and wolves as well as brown bears and lynx. Bird life in the forested areas includes cranes, black cock, wood grouse, starling and blue titmouse. In the steppe zone you will discover ground squirrels, marmots, jerboas, hamsters and field mice. Bird watchers can see steppe eagles, quail, skylark and pink starling. Many bird species reside along the coastal areas and include cormorants, pelicans, wild ducks, martins, herons, sea gulls and bitterns. Within the seas are sturgeon, bullhead and mackerel. Ukraine’s fresh waters provide a habitat for trout, perch, pike, bream, carp, zander, sazan and crucian.
When visiting Ukraine be sure to visit the country’s protected areas. You will have a wonderful time spotting and photographing Ukraine’s wildlife.