Status and Trends of Biodiversity
Samoa is an independent small island developing state located in the South Pacific region. The country is geologically young and thus its biodiversity is not highly diverse. Nevertheless, isolation of the island contributes to a very high species endemism of over 30%. The vegetation in Samoa is divided into five categories: littoral, wetland, rainforest, volcanic scrub and distributed vegetation. There are nearly 500 species of native flowering plants and 25% are endemic to Samoa. A further 500 or so species of plants have been introduced to the islands. There are 13 mammal species, 56 bird species, and 17 reptile species. No detailed studies of native freshwater fish have been conducted, but 991 marine fish species have been recorded. Little is known about terrestrial invertebrates, however 21 species of butterflies, 20 species of land snails, and 59 species of ant have been found in Samoa. Threats to Samoa’s biodiversity include increased forest clearance, marine pollution, overexploitation of marine resources, natural disasters and global warming.
Number and Extent of Protected Areas
There are 10 declared protected areas, 2 of which are marine protected areas, covering 14,000 ha and 10,000 ha respectively.
Percentage of Forest Cover
The total forest area is 105,000 ha, with 100,000 ha of natural forest and 5,000 ha of plantations equaling to 37% of the total land area.