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The National Park Pelister – Bitola

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The first Macedonian national park

The National Park Pelister is situated in the southeast part of the Republic of Macedonia, covering an area of 12 500 hectares. In 1948 it was proclaimed as first protected natural good in the Republic of Macedonia. It is characterized with a great number of peaks and hills higher than 2000 meters, divided between themselves by deep valleys. The highest mountain peak is Pelister (2601 m). From the relief forms of Pelister, the most impressive are the so called stone rivers. They are relief inclinations filled with rock blocks of different content. From the hydrographic objects, with especial natural beauty are the two glacial lakes - the Big and the Small Lake on Pelister, known as `Gorski Oci` (Mountain Eyes).

Pelister has diverse flora, and from there comes the specific botanical importance.  Here grows 88 wood species, which represents 29% of the total dendro (wooded) flora of Macedonia. There are 21 flora communities in the vegetation on Pelister, 8 of which are wood and 13 grass communities. The greatest value among wood species belongs to the molika - autochthonous specie of the five-leaf pine of tertiary age, which grows only on several mountains on the Balkan Peninsula. The altitude of the molika distribution on Pelister is from 600 up to over 2200 meters. NP Pelister presents a classical find for more than 20 plant species, 2 of which are local endemics. The following vertebrates can be found there: 10 amphibian species, 15 reptiles, 91 bird species and 35 mammal species. From the fish species it is important to be mentioned the presence of the Pelister endemic stream trout (Salmo trutta peristericus) and the Pelagonia stream trout (Salmo trutta pelagonicus).

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