The Wildlife of Skopelos

Skopelos is an island near the Mediterranean and is exposed to vast sunlight. This opens the door for economic opportunities as well as creates a thriving ecosystem. Large ecosystems include the forests of Aleppo pines, Kermes oaks, Holm oaks, many of which have trees that grow fruit which sustains the economy and wildlife. Skopelos has many systems in place to improve the environment, even though it has worse statistics in recycling than Greece or any surrounding area. Waste gets dumped in a landfill or put on private property owned by Skopelos. Due to the dumping, many citizens sift through piles of trash to find materials such as metal. Another result of dumping is the amount of pollution in the area, the negatively affects the economy, environment, and wildlife.

The water supply is stored in tanks, water is collected from the ocean, as well as complex systems used to obtain falling rain. There are plans to build an artificial lake in Panormos, so the region could use more freshwater or establish a new ecosystem. Recently, solar energy has been used for things like hot water, due to the vast amount of sunlight in the region. If the energy is harnessed then the island can improve its pollution problem. Tourism avenues have not been explored, most buildings rely on electricity produced by Greece.

Bids and Mammals

Skopelos Birds

Skopelos’ unique geography produces wildlife that is vast and diverse. Starting with bird species, which there are over 60 of, include Eleonora's falcon, the Eurasian scops owl, and buzzards; these birds are common predators. Other smaller birds are kestrels, eagles, and vultures, and the hooded crow. Along the coast are different species of Seagulls, such as the great cormorant, the herring gull, and the yellow-legged gull. Mammals include stone martens, brown rats, and house mice, white-breasted hedgehogs, bats, and European hares. The island has also introduced fallow deer, which they plan to mate together and spawn a new species. Cats around the villages are also very common, however, most are stray and feral. The Mediterranean monk seal is a rare mammal that lives on the coast of the Skopelos. The seal is suffering from the pollution in the area due to the recycling inefficiency, as well as accidentally being killed by human boat equipment.

Reptiles and Amphibians

Reptiles/amphibians include the Balkan terrapin and the Greek marsh frog. The Erhard's wall lizard walks along with villages in the daytime and the Mediterranean house gecko sneaks at nighttime. The island is home to several snakes including the Montpellier snake, the leopard snake, the Caspian whipsnake, the four-lined snake, the grass snake, and the nose-horned viper. Also found around are common toads. The main threat to the animals and environment is pollution. Skopelos has tried alternate energy sources like solar energy and collecting rainwater. But their recycling system is flawed, trash is either dumped onto a landfill or private property. The regions’ animals face the consequences, especially the monk seal. Even though the Skopelos has a vast ecosystem, their economic faults lead to negative impacts on the areas.