Discover the fauna and flora around your home
28 February 2022
Biodiversity. The Biodiversity Atlas of Barcelona offers the possibility of identifying the animal and plant species that can be found near a given location.
Barcelona is home to a great diversity of living things. In green areas, as well as in the city's streets and buildings, there are numerous species (including human beings) which make up the urban ecosystem. A large part of this variety is collected in the Biodiversity Atlas of Barcelona, which contains information on some 1500 plants and more than 500 animals identified in different parts of the city, and allows you to discover the species that live around your home, in your neighbourhood or in any other area of the city.
The Atlas is an interactive tool promoted by the City Council’s Department of Ecology, Urban Planning and Mobility with the aim of raising public awareness of biodiversity and learning how to enjoy and protect it. Therefore, as well as listing the number of species in a given area of Barcelona, the tool provides information on each one, such as its scientific name, aspects of its biology and ecology, photographs to facilitate its recognition or the number of specimens identified in the city.
Did you know that the neighbourhood with the most species detected is Poble-Sec, which includes all the parks and gardens on Montjuïc mountain? This is what the Atlas indicates as soon as you enter, as the map shows the number of species detected in each of the 73 neighbourhoods of the city. By clicking on one of the neighbourhoods you can see the details of the creatures living there, but the tool also allows you to search using different criteria, such as the type of organism (trees, other plants, birds, butterflies and vertebrates) or groups of species such as naturalised ponds or plant communities.
Perhaps the most interesting criterion that the Atlas incorporates is the search by address. Thus, you can enter the address of your home or any other place in Barcelona and the tool will return the list of species identified within a radius close to the indicated place. What’s more, the Atlas incorporates a layer with the city’s vegetation cover that gives visibility to urban green spaces, which provide essential natural values to the city, while enhancing biodiversity and resilience in the face of emerging challenges such as climate change.
In 2020, the number of species in the Barcelona Biodiversity Atlas was expanded. The updated data were obtained from an inventory carried out with various sources: citizen science projects, ICO (Catalan Institute of Ornithology), Galanthus, Oxygastra, uBMS (Urban Butterfly Monitor Scheme), CBMS (Catalan Butterfly Monitoring Scheme), UB (Barcelona University), UAB (Autonomous University of Barcelona) and CREAF (Centre for Ecological Research and Forestry Applications) and other entities, such as BR (Barcelona Regional), BCASA (Barcelona Ciclo del Agua, SA) and PIJBIM (Municipal Institute of Parks and Gardens).
As a result of this expansion, the number of species and specimens increased substantially. In the case of animals, 169 species of birds, 19 mammals, 10 reptiles, 3 amphibians and numerous invertebrates were identified: 61 beetles, 48 spiders and 42 butterflies, among others. In terms of plants, 441 species of trees (with more than 240,000 specimens in the city), 1191 species of ornamental plants, 200 urban grasses and 9 orchids were identified. It also counted 113 species of lichens, which are a symbiosis between microscopic algae and fungi.