A Flora and Fauna of Symi

A personal guide to the wildlife of Symi and beyond

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Blog posts : "General"

Olive Tree

December 6, 2017

Occasionally I come across an olive tree with real character and age such as this one. I am guessing it was probably part of an olive grove once upon a time. Appolakia bay on Rhodes.

 

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Mediterranean Funghi

December 3, 2017

The birth of a mushroom. On Rhodes in pine woodland, the smaller ones on open arable fields. Lots of rain this year so should be good for mushroom hunters! Waiting for identification.

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ΜΕΣΑΝΑΓΡΟΣ

December 2, 2017

Mesanagros is a small village perched on the side of a hill at about 400 metres above sea level in the middle of the southern tip of Rodos. On three sides every hill and slope has been terraced by man for cultivation but lost through the ages with just a few olive groves here and there. Indeed, the village's name means "large enclosed byzantine far…

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Common Buzzard

November 26, 2017

It's been a few days since I posted anything and the square at Stavros and staircase above it is still the same as in the photo on a previous post. We have moved to our winter quarters after doing some repair work, sorting the water supply out etc. Indeed we are told some able bodies will be coming to start work on the square this week. 

In a…

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Monday

November 20, 2017

A muddy blanket dangles limply over a pipe, its sodden ends dripping into the chasm below. Where once a neatly paved square afforded a view of the colourful houses and churches in the village there is now just the bare bones of Symi, a ravine, pure bedrock scoured clean by a million gallons of water, mud and rocks. Years of household rubbish, aband…

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Sunday

November 19, 2017

I am standing on the balcony and watch the storm approaching. Night becomes day; a brief instant in time and the Acropolis in front of me is revealed. The houses below light up and the church on top almost touching the sky. The thunder is constant but still the rain is light, a few drops here and there. The lightning zigzags across the sky from clo…

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Symi

November 15, 2017

By now I'm sure that most of you have heard of the terrible storm that's happened here. Until the situation improves I will be unable to post any further articles. This is the view of our local square. The harbour has been devastated and many businesses flooded. I have not heard of any loss of life but people have lost homes and their welfare etc..…

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Rain, Thunder, Lightning and Hail......

November 13, 2017

A welcome drop of rain for Symi today.

Phoenicurus ochruros

November 11, 2017

The black redstart is a common sight during the winter months in the village with its "tick, tick" call. Originally it nested in cliffs and cracks in rocks in the mountains so it is not hard to understand why these birds may do well amongst the ruins here on Symi.

 

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Common Sternbergia

November 10, 2017

An early flowering Autumn bulb and a member of the daffodil family, Common sternbergia (Sternbergia lutea), basking in some late afternoon sunshine.

 

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Turpentine Tree

October 25, 2017

Autumn again now on Symi. One of my favourite trees, the turpentine tree. The fruits are used in Cyprus for baking of a specialty village bread. In Crete, where the plant is called tsikoudia, it is used to flavour the local variety of pomace brandy, also called tsikoudia. In the Northern Sporades the shoots are used as a vegetable (called tsi…

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Autumn

October 21, 2017

Autumn migration seems to have nearly passed us by this year on Symi with very few birds. Crag martins can be seen here now, taking up residence for the winter with an abundance of chiffchaffs and robins. I did manage to find a few migrants, a distant red back shrike and some spotted flycatchers in the residual oak forest that grows at the tops of …

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Shag

October 17, 2017

A mediterranean shag at Panormitis.........

A Rather Ripe Pomegranate

October 16, 2017

It's the season for ripening pomegranate fruit. The pomegranate is a symbolic fruit, signifying beauty, love, marriage, fertility, birth, rebirth, hope and prosperity. It is also the symbol of the start of a new year, the first rains, planting the fields or the "first spring" here on Symi.

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Little Owls

October 15, 2017

Nice to see the return of a little owl in our area. He comes every afternoon about 5pm and makes a great deal of noise so it makes up for the loss of the six pairs of kestrels that we we used to have in the village and harbour last year......

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Predator & Prey

October 14, 2017

Not a good outcome for the agama, I suspect.

Reptiles

October 12, 2017

Basking in the warm Autumn sunshine are a couple of common reptiles seen around Symi. The starred agama which changes colour to suit its surroundings and the snake eyed lacertid which is forever darting from rock to rock.

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Another Look.....

October 11, 2017

I'm posting these Arums again as I find them strangely exotic and very beautiful and in a week or so they'll be gone for another year. The pointy thing in the middle is the spadix, at the top it is colourful and sometimes smelly to attract insects, below which are the male flowers, then a sterile area, beneath which are the female flowers. Below is…

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Walnut Trees

October 10, 2017

An unusual find for Symi are these two walnut trees high up in the mountains. They are likely to be planted as cultivated specimens as they are close to an extensive disused terrace system and at the edge of a ravine where there is a better chance of a water source. Walnut trees can live to a great age of over two hundred years and can have a diame…

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And as luck would have it.......

October 9, 2017

Yesterday we watched a short toed eagle or snake eagle for an hour or so struggle with a live snake in the sky while his partner called and called...... 

 

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20 blog posts