A Flora and Fauna of Symi

A personal guide to the wildlife of Symi and beyond

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Blog posts June 2015

Review: September 2014

A favourite of mine is the spur thigh tortoise which can be found almost anywhere on the island from the harbour to Panormitis.

Review: August 2014

A memorable moment during a few days on Kalymnos produced this unusual long tailed shrike.


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Review: July 2014

There are two plant species that grow only on Symi, and as far as I know this one is still there! Verbascum symes.

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Around the helipad.....

The area around the helipad can produce some good butterfly watching and a few interesting plants from time to time....

The greek horehound or Ballota acetabulosa is a favourite plant food source for butterflies and insects.......

Quite a few of these members of the onion family hereabouts, Allium ampeloprasum

Thyme (Thymus ca…

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More Flowers from the Spring

Ornithogalum narbonense


Filago Eriocephala

Petrohagia dubia

Centaurium tenuiflorum

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A Few Easily Overlooked Plants

The theme here is that they all took me weeks, if not months, to identify! 

Micromeria myrtifolia

Valantia hisipida

Rubia tenuifolia

Euphorbia acanthothamnus

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The summer solstice marks, for me, the beginning of several months of long, hot, sunshine filled days with no rain and little prospect of any serious rain til November. It also marks the end of the cycle of growth for many plants; the flowers have long gone, there will be a few here and there that will throw up flowers in the tough drought conditio…

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The Longest Day

The sun came up at 5.55am just a few minutes later than scheduled, but then there are a few mountains in the way. A timely reminder of what drives all life here on Earth.


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Aghios Ioannis

The walk to Aghios Ioannis starts about a kilometer before you reach Panormitis. Following a dirt track to a left turn there is a path through the woods to the remote church of St Ioannis. It is way marked with red painted crosses. 






undefinedThis is almost exclusively a calabrian pine forest, a really drought resistant tree - Pinus b…

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And now for something completely different......

A twenty four hour time lapse view of Symi harbour by Christian Vydelingum.


Prasium is an evergreen shrub and a member the mint family. Shown here well after the flowering phase and the last picture includes moth eggs neatly laid on the fruit.

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Two fruits

The berries from the turpentine tree (left) and the almond. 

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Towards the top of the hill the track opened out to afford some splendid views. An interesting row of thistles stand to the side..........

A pair of common buzzards soar high above the hill with their distinctive cries......

Campanulas (canterbury bells) cling to the rock faces by the side of the road....undefined

Lower down I come across …

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Archipoli, Rodos

A walk around the woods to the south of Archipoli on Rhodes. A track not dissimilar to any in England..........


There is still water flowing in the streams, in this case thousands of bees taking a dip......


Elsewhere dragonflies abound (shown in yesterday's report) along with this powdered brimstone...

Amongst the deciduous woodland there …

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 Top left, clockwise; southern skimmer (Orthetrum brunneum); odalisque (Eppage fatime); broad scarlet (Crocothemis servilia); small skimmer (Orthetreum taeniolatum), all from Rhodes near Archipoli.

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Lampranthus roseus. A succulent plant from South Africa often grown in gardens and sometimes found wild on the cliffs.

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Campanula hagielia.Campanula delicatula.

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Growing out of somebody's back yard in the harbour, elderflower or Sambucus nigra!

The berries got eaten very quickly by a greedy blackbird, I suspect.

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Hairy Thorny Broom

It took me awhile to identify this shrub as I only had the pea (clue - Leguminosa!) like seed pods to go on. Calycotome villosa or the hairy thorny broom, here seen above Nimborio. 

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"Five Remarkable Marine Animals & Where To Find Them"

"Five Remarkable Marine Animals in Greece  (and where to find them)" by Cliff Blaylock from the Greek Reporter

Click here for the link.

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20 blog posts