Animals in Croatia

Below you can find a complete list of Croatian animals. We currently track 139 animals in Croatia and are adding more every day!

Croatia is a small U-shaped country that sits at the crossroads of central and southeastern Europe. It shares a border with Slovenia, Hungary, Serbia, Montenegro, and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Croatia also sits directly adjacent to Italy across the Adriatic Sea. Most of the country is comprised of lowland territory, including the Pannonian plains in the north and the Adriatic Basin in the south along the coast. These two regions are cut in half by the central mountain range, the Dinaric Alps, which include the highest point in the entire country, Dinara, at 6,000 feet. It is estimated that Croatia contains some 50,000 to 100,000 species of both plants and animals, some of them completely unique to the country. Wolves, bears, foxes, wild boars, weasels, and wild cats inhabit the inland forests and plains. Reptiles and marine life can be found near the coast. Wild goats can be found at higher elevations as well.

The Official National (State) Animal of Croatia

The marten (a member of the weasel family) is the official national animal of Croatia.

Where to Find the Top Wild Animals in Croatia

Croatia is home to more than 400 protected areas, including eight national parks, two reserves, and 11 nature parks. They encompass around 9% of all Croatian land.

The Most Dangerous Animals in Croatia Today

Croatia contains several species of venomous snakes and spiders.

  • Horned Viper – This species can be found in rocky hillsides all across the country. As one of the most dangerous snakes in all of Europe, the horned viper can deliver a powerful toxin that may lead to pain, swelling, and discoloration.
  • Common European Viper – Although it does not have the most potent poison, this viper is quite common all over Europe and so it’s responsible for the most bites. In Croatia, it can be found in river lowlands, plains, and mountains. Symptoms of its bite can include pain, swelling, tingling, and blisters. Cardiovascular failure may occur in a very small number of cases.
  • Meadow Viper – This species can be found in grasslands and meadows at higher elevations. Because of its rarity and the relatively low potency of its toxin, the meadow viper doesn’t pose as much of a danger as other species of vipers, but bite victims should always seek immediate medical attention.
  • Black Widow Spider – The bite of the European black widow can be quite painful and annoying. In uncommon cases, it can cause muscle spasms, cramping, and an increased heart rate, but death from its bite is exceptionally rare.

Endangered Animals in Croatia

While Croatia has a long list of protected species, several animals are currently endangered or at some risk of becoming extinct.

  • Mediterranean Monk Seal – This seal was once a fairly common sight around the Croatian coast, but overhunting, pollution, and coastal development have made it endangered. It is estimated that less than 600 or 700 individuals are scattered across the entire Mediterranean Sea.
  • Olm – This unique snake-like aquatic salamander dwells exclusively in the caves of the Dinaric Alps. Unlike many other amphibians, the olm spends nearly its entire life underwater. As a result of its very particular environmental requirements, this salamander is highly sensitive to pollution. As numbers fall, it is in danger of becoming extinct in Croatia.
  • Eurasian Lynx – A unique subspecies of the common Eurasian lynx that became extinct from Croatia in the early 20th century due to habitat destruction and illegal poaching. In the 1970s, it was reintroduced to Slovenia and then spread to Croatia from there. A few hundred now remain in the entire Dinaric Alps region.
  • Eurasian Wolf – This subspecies of the gray wolf almost completely disappeared from the region in the 19th and early 20th centuries. But after being reintroduced in the 1990s, the wolf has rebounded slightly in the north of the country.
  • Dalmatian Turtle – This subspecies of Hermann’s tortoise is native to the Adriatic coast on the Balkan side. It is endangered by habitat loss, pollution, and poaching.
  • Eurasian Beaver – By the turn of the 20th century, the beaver was nearly hunted to extinction for its fur and oil. As numbers rebound, it’s becoming more common across Croatia and the rest of Europe.

Croatian Animals

Ant

First evolved 100 million years ago!

Aurochs

Extinct ancestor of all domesticated cattle!

Avocet

Has a curved, upturned beak!

Badger

Can reach speeds of 30 km/h!

Barn Owl

Found everywhere around the world!

Bat

Detects prey using echolocation!

Beetle

There are more than 350,000 different species

Bird

Not all birds are able to fly!

Black Widow Spider

They typically prey on insects!

Brown Bear

A dominant predator in it's environment!

Bumblebee

The most common species of bee!

Butterfly

There are thought to be up 20,000 species!

Camel Cricket

The camel crickets that are found in the USA are light brown in color. They also have dark streaks all over their body.

Cat

First domesticated by the Ancient Egyptians!

Caterpillar

The larvae of a moth or butterfly!

Catfish

There are nearly 3,000 different species!

Centipede

There are about 3,000 documented species!

Chamois

Natively found in the European mountains!

Chicken

First domesticated more than 10,000 years ago!

Cicada

Cicadas have one of the longest insect lifespans

Cockroach

Dated to be around 300 million years old!

Common Buzzard

The most common raptor in the UK!

Common Frog

Found throughout the European continent!

Common Loon

Also known as the Great Northern Diver

Common Raven

A group of ravens is called an unkindness or a conspiracy.

Common Toad

Most active in wet weather!

Cow

There are nearly 1.5 million worldwide!

Crab

There are 93 different crab groups

Crab Spider

Crab Spiders can mimic ants or bird droppings

Crane

Many are critically endangered species!

Dalmatian

Have an energetic and playful nature!

Deer

There are around 40 different species!

Dog

First domesticated in South-East Asia!

Donkey

First domesticated 5,000 years ago!

Dormouse

Found in Europe, Africa and Asia!

Dragonfly

It's larvae are carnivorous!

Duck

Rows of tiny plates line their teeth!

Eagle

Has exceptional eyesight!

Earwig

There are nearly 2,000 different species!

Edible Frog

Are known to guard the muddy banks!

Eel

Eels can be a mere few inches long to 13 feet!

Ermine

A very bold and ferocious predator!

Falcon

The fastest creatures on the planet!

Ferret

Ferrets can be trained to do tricks like dogs!

Fire-Bellied Toad

Found across mainland Europe and Asia!

Fire salamander

Its name comes from the fact that people once believed it was born in fire

Fly

There are more than 240,000 different species!

Flying Squirrel

Can glide up to 90 meters!

Fox

There are 12 different species in the world!

Frog

There are around 7,000 different species!

Glass Lizard

Can grow up to 4ft long!

Glow Worm

Found inhabiting dense woodland and caves!

Goat

Most closely related to the Sheep!

Golden Oriole

Migrates between Europe and Asia!

Goose

There are 29 different species!

Grasshopper

There are 11,000 known species!

Hamster

Able to run as quickly backwards as forwards!

Hare

Can reach speeds of over 40 mph!

Hedgehog

Thought to be one of the oldest mammals on Earth!

Heron

Inhabits wetlands around the world!

Highland Cattle

Natively found in the Scottish Highlands!

Honey Bee

There are only 8 recognized species!

Hoopoe

Stunning bird with a stinky way to deter predators!

Horse

Has evolved over 50 million years!

Horsefly

Horseflies have been seen performing Immelmann turns, much like fighter jets.

Human

Thought to have orignated 200,000 years ago!

Insects

There are an estimated 30 million species!

Jackal

Can maintain speeds of 16 km/h!

Kingfisher

Inhabits wetlands and woodlands worldwide!

Ladybug

There are more than 5,000 species worldwide!

Lemming

Does not hibernate during the bitter Arctic winter!

Lizard

There are around 5,000 different species!

Locust

Each locust can eat its weight in plants each day.

Long-Eared Owl

Ear tufts make it look bigger!

Magpie

They are found across Europe, Asia and Africa!

Marsh Frog

Has bright green skin!

Mayfly

There are 2,500 known species worldwide!

Millipede

Some species have a poisonous bite!

Mole

Primarily hunts and feeds on Earthworms!

Mongrel

Has characteristics of two or more breeds!

Moorhen

Feeds on aquatic insects and water-spiders!

Moth

There are 250,000 different species!

Mouse

Found on every continent on Earth!

Mule

The offspring of a horse and donkey parents!

Neanderthal

Roamed Asia and Europe for around 100,000 years!

Newt

Able to regrow lost or damaged limbs!

Nightingale

Named more than 1,000 years ago!

No See Ums

There are more than 5,000 species.

Olm

Inhabits dark underwater caves

Otter

There are 13 different species worldwide

Peregrine Falcon

Fastest animal on Earth

Pheasant

Females lay between 8 and 12 eggs per clutch!

Pig

Thought to have been domesticated in 9,000 BC!

Pigeon

They can find their way back to their nests from up to 1300 miles away.

Pika

Found in mountainous regions and rocky areas

Pike Fish

Apex freshwater predators with fearsome teeth!

Pond Skater

There are 500 different species!

Pool Frog

The rarest amphibian in the UK!

Porcupine

There are 30 different species worldwide!

Purple Emperor Butterfly

Inhabits deciduous forests!

Puss Moth

Caterpillars squirt formic acid!

Quail

Inhabits woodland and forest areas worldwide!

Rabbit

There are more than 50 different species!

Raccoon

Known to wash their food before eating it!

Raccoon Dog

The only hibernating canine!

Rat

Omnivores that eat anything!

River Turtle

Inhabits freshwater habitats around the world!

Robin

There are more than 45 species in Australia alone!

Salamander

There are more than 700 different species!

Sand Lizard

Males turn green in spring!

Scorpion

There are around 2,000 known species!

Seahorse

Males give birth to up to 1,000 offspring!

Shrimp

There are 2,000 different species worldwide!

Skink Lizard

Some skinks lay eggs in some habitats while giving birth to skinklets in other habitats.

Slow Worm

Found widely throughout British gardens!

Snail

There are nearly 1,000 different species!

Snake

There are around 3,000 known species worldwide

Snowy Owl

One of the largest owl species in the world!

Spadefoot Toad

They spend most of their time underground!

Sparrow

There are 140 different species!

Squirrel

Small rodents found in woodlands worldwide!

Stag Beetle

More than 1,200 different species!

Stick Insect

There are more than 3,000 different species!

Stoat

Average adults weigh about 200 grams!

Swan

Populations have been affected by pollution!

Tawny Owl

The most widespread owl in Europe!

Termite

Their mounds can be up to 9 meters tall!

Thrush

The American robin is called the robin because its red breast reminded European settlers of the robin back in the old country.

Tree Frog

Found in warmer jungles and forests!

Vulture

There are 30 different species worldwide!

Wasp

There are around 75,000 recognised species!

Water Buffalo

Has been domesticated for thousands of years!

Water Vole

The largest Vole species in the UK!

Weasel

The smallest carnivorous mammal in the world!

Wild Boar

Males have a top tusk to sharpen the bottom one!

Wolf

Thought to date back more than 300,000 years!

Wolf Spider

Carnivorous arachnid that hunts its prey.

Woodlouse

Actually a crustacean, not an insect!

Woodpecker

There are 200 different species!

Croatian Animals List

Animals in Croatia FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

What dangerous animals live in Croatia?

Croatia is home to several species of venomous snakes, spiders, and scorpions.

What is the most dangerous animal in Croatia?

The most dangerous wildlife in all of Croatia might be the horned viper.

What sharks are in Croatia?

The Adriatic Sea contains some 20 to 30 species of sharks, including the blue shark, the shortfin mako shark, the angel shark, and the basking shark. Several reports also indicate that the great white shark may sometimes appear around the waters of Croatia.