Natura 2000 animal species

In order to ensure the survival of Europe’s most endangered and vulnerable species, EU adopted the Habitats Directive in 1992. This directive defined habitat types, plant and animal species, rare and endangered in EU and therefore in european interest. Such areas with still good state of the target species or habitat types are protected as Special areas of Conservation (SAC).Natura 2000 site Goričko was designated for protection of 24 animal species.

The extremely small, only 3 mm large narrow-mouthed whorl snail (Vertigo angustior) lives on wet meadows. Slow running streams are inhabited by Danubian spined loach (Cobitis elongatoides), Ukrainian brook lamprey (Eudontomyzon spp.) and European bitterling (Rhodeus sericeus amarus). The presence of bitterling is dependent solely upon the presence of the thick shelled river mussel (Unio crassus), up to 7 cm big mussel.

Double trunks of the pollarded willows are home of the hermit beetle (Osmoderma eremita). Forests are inhabited by cinnabar flat bark beetle (Cucujus cinnaberinus), Carabus variolosus and common stag beetle (Lucanus cervus).

Stag beetle is the largest european beetle   M. Podletnik

Jersey tiger (Callimorpha quadripunctaria) is a moth that is active by day and by night and can be seen on holy rope. Meadows are home by large copper (Lycaena dispar), marsh fritillary (Euphydryas aurinia), scarce large blue (Phengaris teleius) and dusky large blue (Phengaris nausithous). Danube clouded yellow (Colias myrmidone) is probably extinct on Goričko and Slovenia. Shadowy streams are the habitat of dragonfly Balkan goldenring (Cordulegaster heros). 

Sanguisorba-rich meadows are a home to two butterflies of european importance - scarce large and dusky large blue   M. Podletnik

Larger ponds without fish are inhabited by Italian crewsted newt (Triturus carnifex), while the forest puddles get inhabited by yellow-bellied toad (Bombina variegata).

Yellow-bellied toad   T. Koltai

Among mammals five species of bats and otter are being actively protected. Greater mouse-eared bat (Myotis myotis), lesser horseshoe bat (Rhinolophus hipposideros) and common bent-wing bat (Miniopterus schreibersii) can be found in buildings, pits and cellars. In old forests barbastelle (Barbastella barbastella) and Bechsteins bat (Myotis bechsteinii) roosts. Eurasian otter (Lutra lutra) can be found in all watercourses over Goričko.

Lesser horseshoe bat has only two known roosts in Goričko   G. Domanjko