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Ecosystems of Tara National Park

In Serbia and Tara National Park, there are terrestrial ecosystems and inland water ecosystems. 

Forest ecosystems are the most complex terrestrial ecosystems. Forests and forest ecosystems cover 28% of Serbia, which is lower than the average forest coverage of Europe. In the National Park Tara forests cover 80% of the national park, which is an excellent forest cover. Despite a large number of tree species, forests of Tara also have many other species of plants, animals, fungi and microorganisms. The complexity of Tara forests is also reflected in their expressed storyness and difference in age, which makes these ecosystems very complex and diverse. The space next to deciduous forest of Tara National Park ecosystem is inhabited with mixed and coniferous ecosystems, with a total of 34 forest communities within it. Forest ecosystems of Tara mountain are among the best preserved and the most productive forest ecosystems of Europe.

Meadow ecosystems occupy a small percentage of the Tara National Park. In the area of Tara mountain many types of meadows were developed with 19 meadow plant communities. Meadow vegetation in the area mainly occurred as a secondary formation, on the habitats of different forest communities.

Mountain peats are important and sensitive habitats in the meadow ecosystems, with characteristic species inhabiting them, and they are on the list of protected habitats of Europe. These habitats are present in the closed depressions and sinkholes with deeper clay and swampy bottoms and around mountain rivers and streams. Many rare species can be found in this type of habitat, such as Epipactis palustris Marsh Helleborine and Iris sibirica Siberian iris. In addition to these important meadow ecosystems, vegetation of rocks and vegetation of rock creep and the rubble are also important.

Vegetation of rocks is the most common on vertical rocks and cliffs in the canyon of the river and the semi-limestone massif. The cracks and cavities of rocks are mainly inhabited with moss and ferns and many endemic species.

Vegetation of rock creep and the rubble. In terms of vegetation with a sparse vegetation, mostly represented is the turf grass, adapted to poor conditions of life but some endemic species can also be found there. Special attention must be paid to the Urban Spurge Euphorbia subhastata and Derventan Cornflower Centaurea derventana, endemic plant species that are rare and endangered as released on the Red List of flora of Serbia.

Agricultural ecosystems are represented in the form of a small, isolated area covered with crops, fruit trees, and few cereal culture. Production of these cultures is mainly of organic origin.

Inland water ecosystems in the National Park Tara are consisted of lakes, streams and rivers ecosystems in the National Park Tara. In these types of ecosystems there live 19 species of ichthyofauna. The area belongs to the salmon family (trout) and the transitional barbel region, with the addition of species that inhabit clear, cold mountain water (Brown trout - Salmo trutta, fario and lake trout - Salmo trutta m. lacustris, the huchen - Hucho Hucho) and present indigenous cyprinid (carp) fishing species (chub - Leuciscus cephalus, Common Nase - Chondrostoma nasus, Danube Roach - Rutilus pigus, barbel - Barbus barbus). Mountain stream ecosystems are populated with numerous species of aquatic insects, leeches, crabs, among which the strictly protected species stone crayfish - Austropotamobius torrentium has an important place.

All ecosystems are interconnected and as such maintain the overall balance and stability in nature.

Toward nature, JP National park Tara