Archive for the ‘reptiles & amphibians’ Category

Amphibian stamps

Sunday, December 11th, 2016

Stamps showing amphibians of Spain. 1975.

Common salamander, Marbled newt, European Tree Frog, Midwife Toad and European common frog.

Wild sounds of Barcelona

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014

Just under 4 minutes mini documentary about midwide toads in Montjuïc park, recorded on my mobile. 15 minutes walk from Les Rambles.

A bit of an experiment. First effort at sound recording and nature commentary. Listening back a little paused in the comments. As Lucy Brzoska pointed out to me, there’s a Sardian warbler there too.

Young horseshoe whipsnake

Monday, November 4th, 2013

We came on this very young horseshoe whipsnake this morning on the stone steps of Guadi’s Bodega Güell in El Garraf built as a winery for the slave-enriched Catalan industrialist Güell. Albert, our toddler, was very excited by his first snake. Not venomous but this one was certainly feisty.

California kingsnakes in Gran Canaria

Wednesday, October 23rd, 2013


The California kingsnake was introduced to Gran Canaria accidentally or deliberately several years ago from individuals bred in captivity. The snakes now represent a deadly threat to the Gran Canaria giant lizard (Gallotia stehlini) and Gran Canaria skink. See also: Californian snakes threaten Canarian biodiversity

Programme to contol the snake

Californian snakes threaten Canarian biodiversity

Sunday, June 6th, 2010

California kingsnakes (Lampropeltis getulus) released or escaped on Gran Canary are threatening the island’s biodiversity including the rare giant lizard of Gran Canary. Although 334 have been captured in the last two years, there are thought to be a population of some 1,000 still slithering around the island. It is now considered virtually impossible to extinguish them and efforts are limited to controlling their expansion. They are harmless to humans. More here

No snakes are native to the Canary Islands.

Hermann’s tortoises for Valencia

Saturday, March 13th, 2010

More than three hundred Hermann’s tortoises, many previously kept as pets, have been released into the Sierra de Irta (Castellón). They appear to have adapted well to the area and may already be breeding. The aim is to build up a stable population in region. Although the only original population of Hermann’s tortoises in mailand Spain is in Sierra de L’Albera (Girona), other populations in Catalonia have been reintroduced in Delta del Ebro, El Garraf and Sierra del Montsant. There is a also a population on Mallorca and Menorca. (QuercusVia Wild Spain

Young Montpellier snake

Sunday, December 20th, 2009










Check out Lucy’s great new post on a Montpellier snake she spotted on Montjuic, Barcelona.

Reptiles and amphibians on the forum

Tuesday, September 1st, 2009

The iberianatureforum has become the place to identify and learn about the reptiles and amphibians of Spain. Recently we’ve had discussions on sharped ribbed newts, viperine snakes, smooth snakes, horseshoe whipsnakes, tree frogs and juvenile ocellated lizards. More here

There’s also a rather nice seletion of images of reptiles and amphibians uploaded by our members.

Spanish ribbed newt

Tuesday, September 1st, 2009

New research on the Spanish ribbed newt (Pleurodeles waltl) has shown exactly how this remarkable animal uses its ribs as a defence. When attacked, the newt pushes out its ribs until they literally pierce through its body, exposing a row of sharp bones. Meanwhile, a poisonous milky substance is secreted onto the body surface, turning the bones into lethal barbs. And despite all this, the newt appears to suffer no harm. BBC

See also the original abstract in the Journal of Zoology with the remarkable title Hurt yourself to hurt your enemy

Turtles hatch in Fuerteventura

Saturday, November 8th, 2008

The first loggerhead turtles (Caretta caretta) from eggs brought from Cabo Verde have hatched in Fuerteventura, in the Playa de Cofete in the Parque Natural de Jandía. More are expected to hatch from a total of 781 eggs. The project is planned to last ten years as it will take at least a decade to be able to begin to measure its success when hopefully some of those turtles hatched will return to the same beach as adults.