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Species of Month

Cyprus is characterised by great biodiversity of great importance.

  • Is located in one of the Earth’s Hotspots for Biodiversity, in the Mediterranean Basin (25,000 plant species), the second largest after the Tropical Andes.
  • It is included in one of the 10 “mini hotspots” of the Mediterranean because of its high endemism and its significant floral diversity (Medail & Quezel, 1999).
  • It is located in one of the endemism centres of the earth, in the Mediterranean Basin (13,000 endemic species- 52%).
  • 80% of flora species requiring protection under the European Habitats Directives are Mediterranean.
  • Is located in one of the centres of emergence for cultivated land species (Hatzihambis, 2007).

Up to this day far, 1908 different species, subspecies, varieties, forms and hybrids of plants have been recorded in Cyprus. Based on published data, this figure includes all indigenous plants without taking into account cultivated plants. The endemic plants species of Cyprus meaning those the dispersion of which is constricted only to our island, reach the number of 140 (an endemic rate of 7.3%) and are of great importance for our island’s flora.

On the other hand, the Cyprus fauna consists of 30 mammal species that have been recorded in Cyprus of which 16 are bats, 10 are terrestrial, 3 are dolphins and 1 is a seal species. The largest of these is the Cyprus Muflon (Ovis gmelini ophion).

In addition, Cyprus is located on one of the eight main corridors of bird migration from Europe to Africa and vice versa. The birds that have been recorded so far in Cyprus amount to 370 species out of which 53 are permanent inhabitants and the remaining 317 are migratory species. Six of the permanent inhabitants are considered endemic out of which 2 are considered species and 4 subspecies. There are also 22 reptile species in Cyprus, of which 8 are snakes, 11 are lizards and 3 are turtles, 2 marine and one of freshwater. There are also 3 species of amphibians (frogs). There is also a variety of insects found in Cyprus, of which 52 species are butterflies with 9 endemic species.

The Cyprus Centre for Environmental Research and Education presents to you once every month a species from the flora or fauna of Cyprus as the “Species of the Month” and provides you with the most basic information about this species! Cypriot flora and fauna are one of the most valuable treasures of our island and the studying of them will also make us richer …



Species of November 2019

  Name: Cyprus crested lark Scientific Name: Galerida Crisata Cypriaca Family: Larks (Alaudidae)       General Information’s Cyprus crested lark or as it is commonly called in Cyprus, Tsouroullos has the scientific name Galerida Crisata Cypriaca and is a very common winged resident of Cyprus. It is an endemic subspecies of Cyprus belonging ...

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Species of October 2019

Name: Arum Scientific Name: Arum sintenisii Family: Αροειδών (araceae)     Description This plant is perennial, erect, tubular, with a height of up to 65 cm. It has a pleasant aroma and large leaf, measuring 8.5-25 x 5.5-27 cm, which grow directly from the basement tuber before flowering, towards the ...

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Species of September 2019

Name: Bonelli’s eagle Scientific name: Hieraaetus fasciatus Family: Accipitridae       General information The Bonelli Eagle (Spezaetus) or as it is known in Cyprus, Perticosynchino is a rare eagle that lives permanently in Cyprus and has a special place among bird lovers. It’s Scientific name is Hieraaetus fasciatus. Description It is a ...

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Species of August 2019

  padding right=”10%” left=”10%”] Name: Lotus Scientific Name: Ziziphus lotus Family: Rhamnaceae   General Inforfmation “Do you think I eat cones”? A phrase derived from the Cypriot tradition used by the speaker when he wants to indicate that he is not easily fooled by what his interlocutor says. But what ...

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Species of July 2019

Name: European blind snake – Anilios Scientific Name: Typhlops vermicularis Merrem Family: Typhlopidae     Discerption Anilios (European blind snake) is one of the smallest snakes in Cyprus with a length not exceeding 40 cm and with a very thin trunk that creates a thorn-shaped end in the tail area helping to anchor the snake ...

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Species of June 2019

Name: Rose Geranium Scientific Name: Pelargonium graveolens Family: Geraniaceae   General information It belongs to the family of Geraniaceae. In Cyprus it is called koulin or thkoulin and in Greece it is goldsmith, goldsmith and musk leaf. It blooms from April to September. Description Polycyclic semi-shrubby perennial plant. Hair shoots with glandular and ...

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Species of May 2019

Name: Barn swallow Επιστημονικό όνομα: Hirundo rustica Family: Hirundinidae     General Information’s The characteristic twigs of the swallows and their dancing wings are the herald of spring and flowering in our country. The island has given us a wealth of songs, poems and tales related to swallows. However, most people ...

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Species of April 2019

  Name: Clove Scientific Name: Eugenia caryophyllus Family: Myrtaceae       General Infrormation’s Clove is one of the most popular seasonings in the world, second in sale after pepper [1,2,4]. It is an aromatic flavoring that has a strong, spicy flavor and consists of unripe dried buds [1]. In particular, it consists of ...

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Species of March 2019

Name: Lowell – Caterpillar Scientific Name: Ocnogyna (loweii) Cypriaca Family: Artiicadae     Description It is an invertebrate insect, the lepidopteran insect larva, which is formed from the egg of a butterfly. It has a worm and a soft body that resembles a small cylinder. The body of the caterpillar is fluffy and vivid in ...

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Species of January 2019

Name: Cyprus dwarf hippopotamus Scientific Name: Phanurios Μinor Family: Hippopotamidae     Description The dwarf hippopotamus or the scientific Phanurios minor are one of the oldest mammals in Cyprus, estimated to have arrived on the island 10 to 12 thousand years ago [1,3]. Hippopotamus dwarfs were 1.50 meters long and about 75 cm ...

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