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Flora

33% of Spanish flora

Navarre has been identified as home to 2,650 species of ferns and flowering plants, and around 1,700 species of wild mushrooms and fungi have been recorded. If it is calculated that the number of taxons of vascular plants (ferns and flowering plants) present in Spain ranges between 8,000 and 9,000 (around 80-90% of the total present in the European Union), the approximate number of species and sub-species of vascular flora in Navarre accounts for 33% with regard to Spain and 20% in terms of the European Union, and all within an area that covers only 2% of Spain’s land mass.

There are, however, virtually no plants that are exclusive to Navarre, as only two endemic sub-species have been recorded: cochlearia aragonensis subspecies Navarrena and iberis carnosa subspecies nafarroana, both of the family cruciferae.

The forests

Forests are one of nature’s defining characteristics in Navarre. Virtually the whole area of Navarre is wooded in one or another. In contrast to what has happened in other Spanish regions, traditional modes of woodland husbandry have managed to ensure the survival down to the present day of extensive forest tracts combined with a mosaic of landscapes with other forms of tree covering and natural grasslands, crop farming and reafforestation. Sixty-four percent of the surface area of the Comunidad Foral is forested (between tree-covered and wooded scrubland), which is why the countryside plays such a vital role in the preservation of biodiversity.

According to types of forest, special mention should be made of the vast tracts of deciduous trees, which cover 224,894 hectares, 64% of the woodland area. The main leafy species are beech (37% of the forest area), followed by Mediterranean oak (11%), holm oak (9%), Atlantic oak (6%) and riverbank tree-lines (2%). Insofar as conifers are concerned, there is a prevailing presence of wild pine (15%), and to a lesser extent of Austrian pine, Aleppo pine and Monterrey pine.

It is worth noting that the woodland surface of Navarre has increased over the last century by between 100,000 and 140,000 hectares. This growth has been recorded in almost all kinds of forest, with the reafforestation of conifers responsible for less than half the increase.

Dedalera

Purple Foxglove. (Photo: Etxeberria/Astrain)

Hojas de roble

Close-up of oak leaves.

Forest Inventory

The 3rd National Forest Inventory indicates that the area of forestland in Navarre has grown by 24% over the past twenty years, currently exceeding 460,000 hectares (46% of the total surface area of the Comunidad Foral).

This Inventory recognises Navarre to be the Spanish region with the greatest proportion of mature forests. This conclusion has been reached on the basis of standing biomass (timber-yielding volume with bark), which has increased over the past ten years by 21%, exceeding 54 million cubic metres of timber. There has also been a significant growth in larger trees (with a diameter greater than 7.5 centimetres) and smaller trees (diameter between 2.5 and 7.5 cm) with increases of 16% and 22%, respectively.

Navarre currently has 7,070 million trees, of which 266 million correspond to large trunks (over 7.5 centimetres in diameter) and 441 million to small trunks (between 2.5 and 7.5 cm. in diameter).

Government of Navarre

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