Forests. Albanian National Parks. Wild life. The Main Hunting Natural Resources. Wild birds. Aquatic Birds.
The great climatic, geographic and physical variety of the Albanian territory explains the presence of a rich plant and animal life. Albania has great variety of plants, representing the greater part of the plant life of the Balkan Peninsula. In general, the flora of the western part of the Albanian territory is represented mainly by the Mediterranean evergreen shrubbery and bushes, whereas in the interior of the land it is predominated by the plant life of Central Europe; broad-leaf trees, like the oak and coniferous trees and the Mediterranean varieties are not lacking. The Albanian Alps have typical Alpine flora represented by various grasses and vetch, forming excellent summer grazing grounds for sheep and goats. The flora of Albania is very rich in medicinal plants such as juniper berry, sage, jimson, weed, thyme, linden flowers, mint etc.
Albania is rich in forests. Out of the country’s 28.748km2, nearly 11.000 km2 or 37% are forested. This amounts to almost 1 million hectares with wood volume of 83 million m3. Forests are more extensive along the Northern, north-eastern and south-eastern regions. High forests constitute 46% of the forestland; the remainder is coppice (29%) and scrubs (25%). The major components of forest are Quercus, 32% (300.000 hectares); Fagus silvatica, 17% (160.000 hectares); Pinus, 15.7% (142.000 hectares); Abies, 2% (13.000 hectares) and assorted broad-leaved species, 34% (510.000 hectares).
Protected areas in Albania
Protected areas in Albania are considered those parts of forestland, water, coast or seas, which have basically been intended for protection and preservation of the biodiversity, natural wealth and cultural values. The origin of Protected Areas designation dates back to 1940 with the establishment of the first hunting state reservoir of “Kune-Vain-Tale” (Lezha). The National Forest Park of “Mali i Dajtit” (Tirana) was also officially designated as a Protected area in 1960 and later on other areas like Thethi (Shkodra), Lura (Dibra), Pisha e Divjakës (Lushnja), Llogara (Vlora) and Bredhi i Drenovës (Korça) were designated as Protected areas.
Albania has six national parks, mainly in forestland areas. Their main purpose is to protect the rich variety of fauna including brown bears, wolves, lynx and wild boar. Hunting laws have been introduced. The parks are also attractive natural resorts for visitors and most of them do have recreational facilities. 15 mountain zones for stationary tourism are identified.