Economic Importance for Humans: Positive
As a very distinguishable and unique creature, Proteus anguinus serves as a popular ecotourist attraction in the Dinaric Alps. It is a national treasure of Slovenia, and is so recognized by being pictured on one of the countries coins. Olms are sometimes collected for the pet trade, but doing so is illegal within the countries that protect the species. Proteus anguinus is also used in scientific research as a model for studying the evolution of highly specialized sensory adaptations in aphotic environments.
Positive Impacts: pet trade ; ecotourism ; research and education