Zante / Zakhyntos


Flora and Fauna in Zakynthos. (General part).


In the work carried out by the Archduke on the island of Zakynthos regarding to flora and fauna  was done very thoroughly compared with the rest of the Greek islands, and provided an important basis for the registration of the species found there about a century ago.


The flora found on the island, as we have mentioned in other blogs, is very similar to other islands of the Ionian Sea. We note that in this island there is a lower abundance of species of Quercus (oaks, etc..), quite possibly displaced by the large number of olive trees (Olea europaea) used for agriculture production.


Predominate also several species of pine (Pinus halepensis and Pinus pinea) and cypresses (Cupressus sempervirens), especially in anthropised areas and also in areas where they have been planted after the visit of the Archduke.

As for bushes predominates the "pistacia" (Pistacia terebinthus) and Spartum junceum. Also exists infinity of small size wild vegetation, but the most significant are: Arum italicum, Verbascum italicum, Neruim oleander, cistus, mint and various species of thistles, among others. Near the sea also abundant Crithmum maritimum, Drimia marítima.






As in non-Mediterranean Flora we can find the typical Agaves, which on this island are more prevalent than in the rest of the islands of the Ionian Sea. Regarding to invasive plants repeats the introduction of  Carpobrotus edulis and eucalyptus, even in National Marine Park protected coastal areas of Zakynthos.



The most remarkable fauna that we could find in terms of threat were two: the first was the loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta) that according to the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources) is endangered (EN), and the second species with particular importance, due to their low abundance, is the Mediterranean Monk Seal (Monachus monachus) in critically Endangered (CR) according to IUCN. Of this last we observed two individuals, feeling the team tremendously fortunate for that reason.

On the other hand, we find another species which shows a large abundance: the black urchin (Arbacia sp. Possibly Arbacia lixula) that can be seen in large numbers near rocky shores.

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