EUNIS habitat classification

Prod-ID: DAT-137-en
Created 26 May 2014 Published 09 Feb 2018 Last modified 08 Oct 2021
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This page was archived on 08 Oct 2021 with reason: Other (New version data-and-maps/data/eunis-habitat-classification-1 was published)
The EUNIS habitat classification is a comprehensive pan-European system for habitat identification. The classification is hierarchical and covers all types of habitats from natural to artificial, from terrestrial to freshwater and marine. The habitat types are identified by specific codes, names and descriptions.

European data

EUNIS marine habitat classification review 2019

The review of the marine component of the EUNIS habitat classification was initiated in 2014. Marine benthic habitats, marine pelagic and marine ice associated habitats are separated into three distinct groups, each with a separate classification structure. The first major division in the benthic marine part of the EUNIS classification is based on major biological zones (related to depth) and substrate type. Level 3 reflects the main biogeographical regions of Europe’s seas based on their distinct combinations of salinity and temperature regimes (Arctic, Baltic, Atlantic, Mediterranean and Black Sea). From 16 June 2021 the classification was complemented with crosswalks to Habitats Directive Annex I and to European Red List of Habitats. Crosswalks to marine EUNIS habitats of version 2012 need to be revisited.

EUNIS terrestrial habitat classification review 2017

An extensive review of the EUNIS terrestrial habitat classification was initiated in 2012 based on European vegetation plot data. The first groups of the classification to be revised were forest and other wooded land and heathland, scrub and tundra. The review concerns codes, scientific names and descriptions. A new element of the revised classification is that indicator species are identified for level 3 habitat types. The revision of the groups were concluded after a consultation with EIONET and vegetation experts. The review is on-going and more groups will become available as will also crosswalks from revised groups to Habitats Directive Annex I, to European Red List of Habitats and to the EuroVeg CheckList 2016. Links to the detailed methodology are in the Documents tab.

EUNIS habitat classification 2012 - updated 2019 as regards two habitats

The full list of EUNIS habitats 2012: codes, scientific names and revised descriptions. The habitat descriptions of the EUNIS classification 2007 were revised in 2012. The 2007 habitat types were not changed in the 2012 description revision which mostly replaced Palaearctic or UK Marine habitat classification codes used in habitat descriptions at levels 5 and below with their EUNIS classification equivalents. In 2019 the classification was further amended to include two new habitats of the revised Resolution 4 of Bern Convention as adopted at the 38th Standing Committee meeting, November 2018. The two habitats are G3.4G Pinus sylvestris forest on chalk in the steppe zone and X36 Depressions (pody) of the Steppe zone.


Documents about the EUNIS habitat classification

Reports from the projects leading to the revision of EUNIS habitat classification, including a detailed methodology, are available at Below are documents and crosswalks for the 2019 marine classification and the 2007 (revised descriptions 2012) version of the classification.


Additional information

Cross-walks between the EUNIS habitat classification and other hierarchies (e.g. Habitats Directive Annex I habitat types or Corine land cover classes) are available from the Documents tab.

The EUNIS habitat groups that are revised will be published in parallel to the EUNIS habitat classification 2007. A maximum of 20 indicator species for each of the revised habitats is included in the Excel file. The full lists of indicator species are available from the background reports.


The EUNIS habitat classification of 2007 is also available in:

French (translation not by the EEA)

Terrestrial habitats

Marine habitats volume 1 : habitats littoraux

Marine habitats volume 2 : Habitats subtidaux et complexes d’habitats

Italian (translation not by the EEA)

Habitats according to the Eunis nomenclature: manual of classification for the Italian reality


Habitat checklists based on the EUNIS habitat classification developed at the national level:

Official checklist for habitats present in Spain



Geographic coverage

Temporal coverage