Amphibians - Reptiles

The region of the Rodopi Mountain Range with the abundance of water and the middle leveling expanses favors the development of a wide variety of amphibians and reptiles.

In the National Park of Rodopi Mountain Range one can locate various species of amphibians, Caudata and Anura. This is happening due to the intense presence of water and to the light intensity of human activities.

The most important habitats of amphibians in the area are the meadows without large inclination where rivers flow by. The ponds, the rivers and creeks widenings are the most important places of reproduction for the majority of these species.

 

Within the area of the National Park, 13 species of amphibians have been registered such as the Yellow-bellied Toad (Bombina variegata L.) (Pic.1) and the Southern Crested Newt (Triturus arntzeni Litvinchuk, Borkin, Dzukic & Kalezic). The most abundant species in the area is the Common Frog (Rana temporaria L.) and the Salamander (Salamandra salamandra L.) Furthermore, the existence of the Alpine Newt (Ichthyosaura alpestris Laurenti) is very interesting due to the fact that it has been registered only in very few locations in the National Park.

 

Moreover, the area of the National Park has a rich and exceptional herpetofauna due to the territorial diversity and the flora mosaic.

 

Among the reptiles, the presence of the north European species of the Sand Lizard (Lacerta agilis L.) and the Adder (Vipera berus L.) is very interesting as they are found at their southernmost range in Europe.

 

 

Species of community interest in the National Park are all the turtle species (in total 4) which exist in the area, that is the two terrapins, European Pond Terrapin (Emys orbicularis L.) and the Balkan Terrapin (Mauremys rivulata Valenciennes) and the two terrestrial turtles (tortoises), the Herman's Tortoise (Testudo hermanni Gmelin (pic.2) and the Greek Tortoise (Testudo graeca L.) as well as two snakes, the Four-lined Snake (Elaphe quatuorlineata Lacépède) and the European Ratsnake (Zamenis situla L.).

 

An indicative table of amphibians and reptiles, which are found in the Rodopi Mountain Range National Park, follows:

 

 

AMPHIBIANS & REPTILES OF THE RODOPI MOUNTAIN RANGE NATIONAL PARK (RMRNP)

 

Amphibian Species of the RMRNP and conservation status

 

No

SCIENTIFIC NAME

COMMON NAME

RED LIST of THREATENED SPECIES of GREECE

IUCN Red List

HABITATS DIRECTIVE 92/43/EEC

BERN CONVENTION

 

CAUDATA

 

Salamandridae

1

Lissotriton vulgaris  L.(syn. Triturus vulgaris L.)

Smooth Newt

NE

LC

 

ΙΙΙ

2

Salamandra salamandra  L.

Salamander

NE

LC

 

ΙΙΙ

3

Ichthyosaura alpestris Laurenti (syn. Triturus alpestris, Mesotriton alpestris)

Alpine Newt

VU

NE

 

ΙΙΙ

4

Triturus arntzeni Litvinchuk, Borkin, Dzukic & Kalezic (syn. Triturus karelinii, Triturus karelinii arntzeni)

Southern Crested Newt

NT

LC

II, IV

II

 

ANURA

 

Bufonidae

5

Bufo bufo L.

Common Toad

LC

LC

 

III

6

Bufo viridis Laurenti(syn. Pseudepidalea viridis)

European Green Toad

LC

ΝΕ

IV

II

Bombinatoridae (Discoglossidae)

7

Bombina variegata  L.

Yellow-bellied Toad

LC

LC

II,  IV

II

Hylidae

8

Hyla arborea  L.

European Tree Frog

LC

LC

IV

II

Ranidae

9

Pelophylax kurtmuelleri Gayda(syn. Rana balcanica)

Balkan Frog

LC

NE

 

III

10

Pelophylax ridibundus Pallas(syn. Rana ridibunda)

Marsh Frog

LC

LC

V

III

11

Rana dalmatina Bonaparte

Agile Frog

NE

LC

IV

II

12

Rana graeca Boulenger

Greek Stream Frog

NE

LC

IV

III

13

Rana temporaria L.

Common Frog

VU

LC

V

III

 

Herpetofauna of the RMRNP and conservation status

 

No

SCIENTIFIC NAME

COMMON NAME

RED LIST of THREATENED SPECIES of GREECE

IUCN Red List

HABITATS DIRECTIVE 92/43/EEC

BERN CONVENTION

 

TESTUDINATA

 

Emydidae

1

Emys orbicularis L.

European Pond Terrapin

NT

NT

II, ΙV

II

Geoemydidae

2

Mauremys  rivulata Valenciennes(syn. Mauremys caspica)

Balkan Terrapin

LC

NE

II, IV

II

Testudinidae

3

Testudo graeca  L.

Greek Tortoise

LC

VU

II, IV

II

4

Testudo hermanni Gmelin (syn. Eurotestudo hermanni)

Herman's Tortoise

VU

NT

II, IV

II

 

SAURIA

 

Anguidae

5

Anguis fragilis L.

Slow Worm

LC

 

 

III

6

Pseudopus apodus Pallas (syn. Ophisaurus apodus)

European Glass Lizard

LC

NE

IV

II

Lacertidae

7

Lacerta agilis  L.

Sand Lizard

LC

LC

IV

II

8

Lacerta viridis Laurenti

European Green Lizard

LC

LC

IV

II

9

Podarcis muralis Laurenti

Wall lizard

LC

LC

IV

II

10

Podarcis erhardii Bedriaga

Erhard's Wall lizard

LC

LC

IV

II

11

Podarcis tauricus Pallas (syn. Podarcis taurica)

Balkan Wall Lizard

LC

NE

IV

II

Scincidae

12 Ablepharus kitaibelii Bibron & Bory de Saint-Vincent Snake-eyed Skink LC    LC    IV    II

 

OPHIDIA

 

Colubridae

13

Coronella austriaca Laurenti

Smooth Snake

LC

NE

IV

II

14

Dolichophis caspius Gmelin (syn. Coluber caspius)

Caspian Whipsnake

LC

NE

IV

III

15

Elaphe quatuorlineata Lacépède

Four-lined Snake

LC

NT

II, IV

II

16

Zamenis situla  L. (syn. Elaphe situla)

European Ratsnake

LC

LC

II

II

17

Zamenis longissimus Laurenti (syn. Elaphe longissima)

Aesculapian Snake

LC

LC

IV

II

 18

Platyceps najadum Eichwald (syn. Coluber najadum)

Dahl's Whip Snake

LC

 LC  IV  II
 19

Telescopus fallax Fleischmann

European Cat Snake

 LC  LC  IV  II
 Natricidae 

20

Natrix natrix L.

Grass Snake

LC

LC

IV

III

21

Natrix tessellata Laurenti

Dice Snake

LC   

LC   

IV   

II

 Psammophiidae      

22

Malpolon insignitus Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire (syn. Malpolon monspessulanus insignitus Hermann)

Eastern Montpellier Snake

LC

LC

 

III

Typhlopidae

23

Typhlops vermicularis Merrem

Worm Snake

LC

NE

 

III

Viperidae

24

Vipera ammodytes L.

Nose-horned Viper

LC

LC

IV

II

25

Vipera berus L.

Adder

LC

LC

 

III

 

REFERENCES:

 - NATURA 2000

 - Hellenic Zoological Society. (2009). Red List of Threatened species of Greece

 - Hellenic Ministry for the Environment Physical Planning & Public works. (2002). Environmental Study of the Rodopi Mountain Range

 - B.P. PETROV, N. TZANKOV, H. STRIJBOSCH, G. POPGEORGIEV, V. BESHKOV. (2006).  The herpetofauna (Amphibia and Reptilia) of the Western Rhodopes mountain (Bulgaria and Greece)

 - CHONDROPOULOS, B.P. (1986): A checklist of the Greek reptiles. I. The lizards. Amphibia-Reptilia, Volume 7, Number 3, 1986, pp. 217-235(19)

 - CHONDROPOULOS, B.P. (1989): A checklist of Greek reptiles. II. The snakes. Herpetozoa (Wien) 2 (1/2), 3-36.

 - ASIMAKOPOULOS B.( 1997a.) Aspects of the ecology of Rana graeca in Greece (Amphibia: Ranidae).- In: W. Bohme, W. Bischoff, T. Ziegler (eds.), Herpetologia Bonnensis, 11-19.

 - KONSTANTINOS SOTIROPOULOS & ANASTASIOS LEGAKIS & ROSA-MARIA POLYMENI. (1995).  A review of the knowledge on the distribution of the genus Triturus (RAFINESQUE, 1815) in Greece, HERPETOZOA 8 (1/2) : 25 – 34 Wien
 - SOTIROPOULOS, K., ELEFTHERAKOS, K., DZUKIC, G., KALEZIC, M. L., LEGAKIS, A. & POLYMENI, R. M., (2007). ‘Phylogeny and Biogeography of the Alpine Newt Mesotriton alpestris (Salamandridae, Caudata), Inferred from mtDNA Sequences.’ Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 45: 211-226.

  - Kornilios P., Limberakis P., Giokas S., Fraguedaki-Tsoli S., Chondropoulos B.P. (2012). Contribution to the study of phylogeography in the Eastern Mediterranean: the case of the fossorial snake Typhlops vermicularis Merrem, 1820

Glossary for the tables of the amphibian & reptilian species

 

Red List of Threatened species of Greece / IUCN Red List  Categories and Criteria:

CR: Critically Endangered

ΕΝ : Endangered

VU: Vulnerable

ΝΤ: Near Threatened

LC: Least Concern

DD: Data Deficient

ΝΕ: Not Evaluated

Habitats Directive 92/43/EEC:

II : Annex II (Animal and Plant species of community interest whose conservation requires the designation of special areas of conservation)

IV: Annex IV (Animal and Plant species of community interest in need of strict protection)

V: Annex V (Animal and Plant species of community interest whose taking in the wild and exploitation may be subject to management measures)

Bern Convention:

II  : Appendix  II (Strictly protected fauna species)

III : Appendix  III (Protected fauna species)