The seal Monachus – monachus the endemic blue lizard Podarcis milensis and the endemic red adder Macrovipera schweizeri (in the older days known as Vipera lebetina) are the stars of Kimolos fauna and testify to the unique natural environment, but the are not the only ones.
Hawks (gadinelia), cormorants, partridges, sea gulls, wild pigeons, passeriformes, and numerous other endemic birds are the permanent feathery residents of the island. Herons, swans and other migratory species, such as “valtokirkoi”, “ammosfyrichtes” various kinds of “skalidres” (Calidris sp.), “leptoramfoglaroi” etc. live until late in spring at the wetland habitat of Aliki.
Rare sea urchins, corals, lobsters, pinna adorn the depths while a lot of fishes find refuge at the meadows of Posidonia (Posidonia oceanica).
Frequent is the presence of sea turtles to the waters and the sandy beaches.
In spite of the fact that it is a foreign species, the prickly pear is so well adjusted at Kimolos that you will see it everywhere. Perhaps in August you will have the opportunity to taste some of the largest and tastier prickly pears in Greece.
The natural vegetation of the island includes (more than 400 recorded) common and rare Mediterranean species, among them a lot of aromatic and pharmaceutical plants.
Lentisks, myrtles, thyme, cedars, sea daffodils, hollies, capers, thrifts, wild honeysuckle, bulrushes and reeds are the most easily recognized, and together with olive trees, fig trees and vines paint a landscape more green than what you’d expect from an island of the Cyclades and arid as such.
Text: George A. Ventouris, Despoina Athanasiadou-Ventouri
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