Protection of species – aimed at the protection of populations and distribution of species

Protection of plant and animal species is a key means of safeguarding biodiversity. The objective of the protection of species is to conserve viable populations of native and established species within their natural ranges.

Around 45,000 species live in Finland. Enough is known about slightly over 21,000 of these to permit the evaluation of their threat status. One in ten of all evaluated species in Finland is endangered. Finland is the only country that evaluates the threat status of species on such a broad scale.

Jouko Lehmuskallio, Image Bank of the Environmental Administration

A species may be protected by legislation, or declared a threatened species, or placed under a strict protection order by decree. Protection of species is regulated under the Nature Conservation Act.
  • Nature Conservation Act (1096/1996, Finlex)

The European Union's provisions on the protection of species require that species and their habitats are protected and that their hunting and other exploitation are regulated. Deterioration of the breeding sites and resting places of the most strictly protected species is prohibited.

The Finnish Environment Institute collects and evaluates data on changes in species, together with the Centres for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment, the state forest administration Metsähallitus, universities and other research institutions and environmental organisations.

The environmental administration is preparing a national action plan for species protection.

Further information

Esko Hyvärinen, Environment Counsellor, tel. +358 2952 50094,

Published 2013-07-18 at 15:33, updated 2016-05-19 at 9:45