Biological diversity in Serbia is characterized by a large genetic, species and ecosystem diversity. Natural assets are put under protection by acts of competent bodies (by the Decree of the Government of the Republic of Serbia or by the Decision of the Local Authority) on the proposal of the Institute for Nature Conservation of Serbia.
In Serbia, there are 530,714 ha under protection (463 protected areas) or 6% of the country's territory (source: Institute for nature conservation of Serbia). SE "Srbijašume" manages 101 protected areas, on an area of 261,946.78 ha, which makes 49.35% of the total protected areas in Serbia. Preservation, conservation and enhancement of natural assets represent part of the strategy and one of the key objectives in the business policy of SE "Srbijašume", the leading enterprise in managing forests, hunting grounds and protected areas.
Protected natural assets contribute to the preservation and enhancement of: biodiversity, the phenomena of geoheritage, landscapes, environmental quality, durability and quality of natural resources and space as construction-urbanistic category. Protected natural assets (Law on Environmental Protection, 2010) are: protected areas, protected species and protected movable natural documents.
Protected areas have a remarkable geological, biological, ecosystem and/or landscape diversity because of which they are proclaimed protected areas of general interest by protection acts. Protected areas are: strict nature reserves, special nature reserves, national parks, nature monuments, protected habitats, landscapes of exceptional features and nature parks.
Wild species that are endangered or may become endangered, with a distinct importance from the genetic, ecological, ecosystems, scientific and health-related, economic and other aspects, are protected as either strictly protected wild species or protected wild species.
Protected movable natural documents are parts of geological and paleontological heritage, as well as biological documents which have a distinct scientific, educational and cultural importance.