Below you can find a complete list of Croatian animals. We currently track 230 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. 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 live near the coast. Wild goats live 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.
- Plitvice Lakes National Park, located near the center of the country near the Bosnian border, is extraordinarily beautiful and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Viewers can sometimes catch glimpses of European brown bears, lynxes, wild cats, wolves, eagles, owls, the capercaillie, and many other types of wildlife. Croatian butterflies and birds are particularly common here.
- The Paklenica National Park is a river canyon near the Adriatic coast. It contains more than 200 species of birds, including the golden eagle, short-toed eagle, peregrine falcon, and goshawk. Butterflies and other insects are also plentiful.
- Risnjak National Park is located in Gorski Kotar and surrounded by heavy mountains and forests. The lynx appears to be the main attraction. Although once exterminated, this cat was later reintroduced into Slovenia and later spread here. Visitors can also find deer, bears, wild boar, martens, badgers, weasels, chamois, woodpeckers, and many birds of prey.
- Located on a small island chain right off the coast, the Brijuni Islands National Park is a good place to find deer, hares, nesting birds, and marine wildlife. There is also a safari park nearby that contains some exotic animals from Asia and Africa.
The Most Dangerous Animals in Croatia Today
Croatia contains several species of venomous snakes and spiders.
- Horned Viper – This species lives 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 lives 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 inhabits 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. Less than 600 or 700 individuals inhabit 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. Habitat loss, pollution, and poaching endanger it.
- Eurasian Beaver – By the turn of the 20th century, the beaver was nearly extinct due to fur and oil trading. As numbers rebound, it’s becoming more common across Croatia and the rest of Europe.
Flag of Croatia
Throughout Croatia’s war-torn history, it has had many different flags. Croatia’s current flag is tricolor and features horizontal red, white, and blue stripes, with a shield in the center. The shield, which references the original flag of the Kingdom of Croatia, is checkered with a red and white pattern. Above this image, sits a crown made up of five small shields, each representing the areas of Dubrovnik, Dalmatia, Slavonia, Istria, and Croatia.
First evolved 100 million years ago!
They are so named because they "march" in armies of worms from one crop to another in search of food
Extinct ancestor of all domesticated cattle!
Has a curved, upturned beak!
Can reach speeds of 30 km/h!
The Balkan lynx communicates mostly with its ears
Found everywhere around the world!
Older offspring help care for new hatchlings.
Detects prey using echolocation!
Bed bugs feed for 4-12 minutes.
Rock paintings of bees date back 15,000 years
There are more than 350,000 different species
Not all birds are able to fly!
The biscuit beetle form a symbiotic relationship with yeast
They typically prey on insects!
Females glue egg cases to furniture
A dominant predator in it's environment!
Can live its entire life indoors
The most common species of bee!
There are thought to be up 17,500 species!
The camel crickets that are found in the USA are light brown in color. They also have dark streaks all over their body.
Carpenter ants can lift up to seven times their own weight with their teeth!
First domesticated by the Ancient Egyptians!
The larvae of a moth or butterfly!
There are nearly 3,000 different species!
There are about 3,000 documented species!
Natively found in the European mountains!
First domesticated more than 10,000 years ago!
Cicadas have one of the longest insect lifespans
Dated to be around 300 million years old!
Pupae are able to undergo diapause to survive poor fruit yield years and winter.
The most common raptor in the UK!
European adders are the only snake that lives above the Arctic Circle.
Found throughout the European continent!
The common furniture beetle feeds exclusively on wood
House spiders have the ability to eat most insects in a home.
Also known as the Great Northern Diver
A group of ravens is called an unkindness or a conspiracy.
Most active in wet weather!
They can fly 35 mph and dive 150 feet below water.
There are nearly 1.5 billion worldwide!
There are 93 different crab groups
Crab Spiders can mimic ants or bird droppings
Many are critically endangered species!
Male crickets can produce sounds by rubbing their wings together
They are an ancient breed dating back to the 7th century and made their way to Croatian lands giving them the name Croatian Sheep Dog.
A group of these birds is called a Murder.
Have an energetic and playful nature!
There are around 40 different species!
The Devil’s coach horse beetle can emit a noxious substance to deter predators
First domesticated in South-East Asia!
Dog ticks feed on dogs and other mammals
First domesticated 5,000 years ago!
Found in Europe, Africa and Asia!
It's larvae are carnivorous!
Rows of tiny plates line their teeth!
The dung beetle can push objects many times its own weight
Has exceptional eyesight!
They are hermaphrodites, which means they have male and female organs
There are nearly 2,000 different species!
Are known to guard the muddy banks!
Eels can be a mere few inches long to 13 feet!
A very bold and ferocious predator!
The shy eurasian bullfinch prefers to forage very close to cover.
The Eurasian Eagle-owl is the second largest owl in the world with a wingspan up to six feet!
The Eurasian jay has the ability to mimic other sounds
They can eat up to 250 bees per day!
Male robins are so aggressive and territorial that they will attack their own reflections.
The fastest creatures on the planet!
False spiders actually prey on black widow spiders and other hazardous spiders
Ferrets can be trained to do tricks like dogs!
Found across mainland Europe and Asia!
Its name comes from the fact that people once believed it was born in fire
The firefly produces some of the most efficient light in the world
Adult fleas can jump up to 7 inches in the air
There are more than 240,000 different species!
Can glide up to 90 meters!
Only 12 species are considered "true foxes"
There are around 7,000 different species!
Fruit flies are among the most common research animals in the world
The most common type of urban roach
Found inhabiting dense woodland and caves!
Males form large mating swarms at dusk
Most closely related to the Sheep!
The goldcrest never starts moving and needs to consume for most of the day to survive. Therefore, in the colder months, it's best that eat 90% a day.
Their calls sound like high-pitched screams, but they are quiet most of the time.
Migrates between Europe and Asia!
There are 29 different species!
There are 11,000 known species!
Can spot a dead animal from thousands of feet away
One of the most invasive species in the world
Able to run as quickly backwards as forwards!
Can reach speeds of over 50 mph!
Many hawk moth caterpillars eat toxins from plants, but don’t sequester them the way milkweed butterflies do. Most toxins are excreted.
Thought to be one of the oldest mammals on Earth!
Inhabits wetlands around the world!
Natively found in the Scottish Highlands!
There are only 8 recognized species!
Honey buzzards are medium-sized raptors that earned their names by raiding the nests of bees and wasps.
Stunning bird with a stinky way to deter predators!
Has evolved over 50 million years!
Horseflies have been seen performing Immelmann turns, much like fighter jets.
Thought to have orignated 200,000 years ago!
Some huntsman spiders have an interesting way of moving around. Some cartwheel while others do handsprings or backflips.
There are an estimated 30 million species!
Can maintain speeds of 16 km/h!
The jackdaw tends to mate for life with a single partner
Some can jump 50 times the length of their bodies
Inhabits wetlands and woodlands worldwide!
There are more than 5,000 species worldwide!
Lazarus Lizards can communicate through chemical and visual signals.
Does not hibernate during the bitter Arctic winter!
While linnets are monogamous during mating season, they do not mate for life. While breeding pairs are together, the males are highly territorial and will defend the nesting site and the surrounding area.
There are around 5,000 different species!
Each locust can eat its weight in plants each day.
Ear tufts make it look bigger!
Often hangs upside down while feeding!
They are found across Europe, Asia and Africa!
There are 2,500 known species worldwide!
They have a symbiotic relationship with ants.
They line their nests with their feathers
Some species have a poisonous bite!
Primarily hunts and feeds on Earthworms!
Adult Mole crickets may fly as far as 5 miles during mating season and are active most of the year.
Has characteristics of two or more breeds!
Feeds on aquatic insects and water-spiders!
Only the female mosquito actually sucks blood
There are 250,000 different species!
Found on every continent on Earth!
The offspring of a horse and donkey parents!
Roamed Asia and Europe for around 100,000 years!
Able to regrow lost or damaged limbs!
Named more than 1,000 years ago!
There are more than 5,000 species.
The fangs of a nose-horned viper can be as long as half an inch
Depending on the habitat and climate, these beetles can live between 2 to 10 years, often staying in their larval stage for several years, making them extremely dangerous to wooden structures.
Inhabits dark underwater caves
Females are about four times the size of males
The tradition of hiding your face with a napkin or towel while eating this bird was begun by a priest who was a friend of the great French gastronome Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin.
They reuse nesting sites for 70 years!
There are 13 different species worldwide
The owl can rotate its head some 270 degrees
Teachers in schools often use the evolution of the peppered moth as a good example of Darwin’s theory of natural selection.
Females lay between 8 and 12 eggs per clutch!
Thought to have been domesticated in 9,000 BC!
They can find their way back to their nests from up to 1300 miles away.
Found in mountainous regions and rocky areas
Apex freshwater predators with fearsome teeth!
A pine marten can jump from tree to tree similar to a squirrel.
There are 500 different species!
The rarest amphibian in the UK!
There are 30 different species worldwide!
The mantis can turn its head 180 degrees.
Inhabits deciduous forests!
Caterpillars squirt formic acid!
Inhabits woodland and forest areas worldwide!
There are more than 300 different species!
Known to wash their food before eating it!
The only hibernating canine!
Omnivores that eat anything!
Rat snakes are constrictors from the Colubridae family of snakes.
A male red deer shows his age in his antlers, which become longer and more branched every year.
They build their nests off the ground in tree holes, cavities, stone walls, and roofs
Inhabits freshwater habitats around the world!
There are more than 45 species in Australia alone!
The capybara, the world’s largest rodent, likes to be in and around bodies of water. Because of this, the Catholic Church in South America decided that it was a fish, and people were allowed to eat it during Lent and First Fridays.
The roe is one of the most popular game animals in Europe
Will mate with the entire flock!
Its scientific name, lagopus, is Ancient Greek for “hare” and “foot,” referring to its feathered feet and toes.
Ferrets were used during the Revolutionary War to keep down the rat population.
There are more than 700 different species!
The sand crab burrows beneath the sand with its tail
Males turn green in spring!
There are around 2,000 known species!
The sea eagle tends to mate for life with a single partner
Males give birth to up to 1,000 offspring!
The short-eared owl is one of the most widespread owl species in the world, covering five continents.
The spinal column of the shrew Scutisorex somereni is so strong and reinforced that it can support the weight of an adult human.
There are 2,000 different species worldwide!
Some skinks lay eggs in some habitats while giving birth to skinklets in other habitats.
Found widely throughout British gardens!
They glide around on one foot, which is aided by the slime they produce
Has up to 45 eggs per egg case
There are nearly 1,000 different species!
There are around 4,000 known species worldwide
One of the largest owl species in the world!
A male song thrush can have over 100 phrases in his repertoire of songs and can imitate pet birds, telephones and other man-made objects.
They spend most of their time underground!
There are 140 different species!
They prey on spiders to feed their larvae or they parasitize other spider wasps.
Small rodents found in woodlands worldwide!
There are more than 3,000 different species!
Average adults weigh about 200 grams!
They can’t sing like other birds.
Populations have been affected by pollution!
The most widespread owl in Europe!
Their mounds can be up to 9 meters tall!
The skate with the biggest spines!
The American robin is called the robin because its red breast reminded European settlers of the robin back in the old country.
They inject hosts with a chemical that stops them from feeling the pain of the bite
The adult tiger beetle is one of the fastest land insects in the world
The bright colors of this moth are a signal to predators that it has a terrible taste.
Tornjaks are very adaptable and can live harmoniously in packs as they get along well with other dogs.
Found in warmer jungles and forests!
Some species of aquatic turtles can get up to 70 percent of their oxygen through their butt.
The Ural owl can rotate its head up to 270 degrees
Vipers are one of the most widespread groups of snakes and inhabit most
There are 30 different species worldwide!
There are around 75,000 recognised species!
Has been domesticated for thousands of years!
The largest Vole species in the UK!
The Wax Moth larvae are more dangerous than the adult.
The smallest carnivorous mammal in the world!
There are two different types of white ferrets!
Males have a top tusk to sharpen the bottom one!
Thought to date back more than 300,000 years!
Carnivorous arachnid that hunts its prey.
This animal can roll up into a ball
Unlike most spiders, woodlouse spiders don’t build a web.
There are 200 different species!
They feign death by making their bodies limp and closing their eyes.
It interbreeds with the pine bunting
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.