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Phenicolacerta troodica (Cyprus Lizard)

Phenicolacerta troodica (Cyprus Lizard)
Photo Information
Copyright: Bayram Gocmen (boreocypriensis) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6774 W: 207 N: 2989] (9571)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2010-07-03
Categories: Reptiles
Camera: Nikon D-80, AF-S VR Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED, @ ISO 320, SIGMA 62MM EX DG MC UV Filter
Exposure: f/16, 1/250 seconds
Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
Theme(s): Herpetofauna of Cyprus, Fauna of Cyprus island [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2010-12-05 10:07
Viewed: 10389
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 96
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Phoenicolacerta troodica (Troodos, Cyprus Lizard) [in Turk. Trodos Kertenkelesi, Kıbrıs Kertenkelesi] (An adult female)

Today I am presenting another lizard beauty from my homeland, Cyprus island. I photographed these posts (two in WS showing a juvenile and another female) during our last joint trip with Catherine to Cyprus. All shots were captured in my garden around the home (Lapithos, Kyrenia).

TFL and Have a nice new week!


Cyprus Lizard is known only from Cyprus Island as an endemic species with a vertical distribution to 1200 m. (Troodos Mountain, Southern Cyprus). However, it is also a coastal species in Northern Cyprus.

Cyprus Lizard is a diurnal active lizard with a total length around 12-20 cm. Rostral plate in contact with external nares; 2 postnasal plates; 5 supralabial plates in front of subocular plate; supraciliary granules above the eye usually in a complete row (97%); a large masseteric scale in temporal region; 51-68 rows of indistinct keeled dorsal scales at mid-trunk; ventral plates in 6 longitudinal rows; femoral pores between 19-24. In median gular region, scale numbers are 25 in average. The dorsum is gray, greenish-brown with dark spots or maculations. Flanks with a longitudinal dark stripe (temporal band), above which greenish-white round spots are present. Parallel subtemporal bands extend below the temporal bands down to the base of hind legs at least, or to the mid level of the tail. The venter is yellowish-white or light green, lateral parts with blue spots. Chin, throat and venter brick red in breeding season.

It inhabits sandy slopes, arid and vegetated areas, cultivated fields, loose garden walls, rocky and stony damp places; sometimes arboreal. Feeds on insects. A female lays 2-6 eggs.

Closely related species, Phoenicolacerta laevis (Syrian or Hatay Lizard) [Pls Click on the link to see this species] is distributed in Turkey, Syria, Lebanon and Israel. In both the lateral colour pattern of the body and the fairly dark-coloured window of large scales in the lower eyelid, the Cyprus specimens closely resemble P. kulzeri (Kulzer’s Rock Lizard or Petra Lizard) [Pls Click on the link to see this species] known from Syria, Lebanon, Israel and Jordan. However, they are also similar to Anatolian P. laevis specimens in general colouration, for example a strong orange-red colour on the ventral side during breeding season. P. troodica also differs from P. kulzeri in ventral colouration and in some pholidosis characteristics, e.g., absent or small-sized massetericum in temporal region. Habitats of the Petra Lizard and Troodos Lizard are different from each other. While the Petra Lizard is an arid form, the Cyprus form likes a relatively moist habitat, which is similar to the habitat of Hatay Lizard. Phoenicolacerta troodica differs from P. laevis in the following morphological characteristics: in P. laevis, median gularia (gular scale numbers in a medial longitudinal row) number is less (average 20), gular scales larger; the subtemporal “lines” below the temporal bands extend down to the mid-trunk level and also, supraciliary granules usually not in a complete row. Regarding blood-serum proteins, we’ve found qualitative differences in both albumin and globulin proteins between the Hatay and Cyprus Lizard, which confirmed that the Cyprus and Hatay Lizard populations are clearly distinct species. Actually the Cyprus Lizard is accepted as P. troodica rather than the subspecies of P. laevis as previously suggested.

Ps: you could reach to all Cyprus herptiles from my web site for more reading!


1. Göçmen, B. (Unpub. results). The results of herpetological trips.
2. Budak, A. & Göçmen, B. (2005). Herpetology. Ege Üniversitesi Fen Fakültesi Kitaplar Serisi, No. 194, Ege Üniversitesi Basimevi, Bornova-Izmir, 226 pp. [2nd Edition, 2008].
3. Budak, A. & Göçmen, B.. (1995). Kuzey Kıbrıs Lacerta laevis Gray, 1838 (Sauria: Lacertidae) Örnekleri Hakkında. Turkish Journal of Zoology, 19 (2): 1-15.
4. Göçmen, B., Kasot, N., Yildiz, M.Z., Sas, I., Akman, B., Yalçinkaya, D. & Gücel, S. (2008). Results of the Herpetological Trips to Northern Cyprus. North-Western Journal of Zoology, 4 (1): 139-149.
5. Tosunoğlu, M., Göçmen, B., Taşkavak, E. & Budak, A. (1999). A Serological Comparison of the Populations of the Lacerta laevis Complex in Northern Cyprus and Southern Turkey. Zoology in the Midle East, 19, 117-122.
6. Tosunoğlu, M., Göçmen, B., Atatür, M. K. & Çevik, İ. E. (2001). Morphological and Serological Investigations on Lacerta laevis Gray, 1838 (Sauria: Lacertidae) Populations from Anatolia. Zoology in the Midle East, 23: 55-60.
7. Disi, A. M., Modry, D., Necas, P. & Rifai, L. (2001). Amphibians and Reptiles of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. Edition Chimaira, 408 pp.
8. Atatür, M. K & Göçmen, B. (2001). Amphibians and Reptiles of Northern Cyprus (1st Edition), Ege Üniversitesi, Fen Fakültesi Kitaplar Serisi, No. 170, Ege Üniversitesi Basimevi, Bornova-Izmir, 63 pp (ISBN 975-483-486-5) [In Turkish & English]. [A PDF-Printable Version is present in my web site].
9. Schmidtler, J.F. & Bischoff, W. (1999). Revision des levantinischen Lacerta laevis/kulzeri-Komplexes: 1. Die Felseneidechse Lacerta cyanisparsa sp.n. - Salamandra, Rheinbach, 35 (3): 129-146.
10. Arnold, E. N., Arribas, O. & Carranza, S. 2007. Systematics of the Palaearctic and Oriental lizard tribe Lacertini (Squamata Lacertidae Lacertinae), with descriptions of eight new genera. Zootaxa 1430: 1-86.

©Bayram GÖÇMEN, All Rights Reserved. ********** Google Translate

maaciejka, siggi, Dis. Ac., omereser, cirano, Argus, CatherineD, yasemin, marius-secan, cypturk, CeltickRanger, montivipera, jusninasirun, tuslaw, joska, nkasot, Miss_Piggy, xTauruSx, mehmetk, anemone, matatur, bahadir, zulfu, eqshannon, eng55, Luis52, uleko, paolo49, Hormon_Manyer, Alex99 has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To eng55: merhababoreocypriensis 1 12-07 11:52
To mehmetarslan: teşekkürler Mehmetboreocypriensis 1 12-06 14:47
To stomsoncy: selamboreocypriensis 1 12-06 13:37
To montivipera: Sağolboreocypriensis 4 12-06 02:47
To Miss_Piggy: Hi Annaboreocypriensis 1 12-05 23:39
To maurydv: wowwwboreocypriensis 1 12-05 14:52
To CeltickRanger: hmmmboreocypriensis 1 12-05 14:29
To cypturk: :)boreocypriensis 1 12-05 13:49
To CatherineD: :)boreocypriensis 1 12-05 12:45
To Argus: Thanks Ivanboreocypriensis 1 12-05 12:33
To cirano: spasboreocypriensis 3 12-05 12:30
To omereser: ehue:))boreocypriensis 3 12-05 12:05
To lousat: Thanksboreocypriensis 1 12-05 11:48
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To maaciejka: Thanksboreocypriensis 1 12-05 10:27
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Critiques [Translate]

Hi Bayram,
great sharpness of Your photo. I like these colours. Great composition.
Great job,

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2010-12-05 10:17]

Hello MF Bayram.
Great sharpness and details. You have managed the light and shadow mix very well. Excellent POV and pose seen in your lizard. Very well done my friend. Best regards Siggi

Hello Bayram,
This is a very nice composed picture of very colourful lizard species. Details and sharpness are excellent. Well done!

Beautiful capture Bayram. The fine detail in the Lizards body is perfectly well defined! Good natural colors and pleasant sharpness. I do not think that you had time to compose that image, so let me say ...good point of view! Bravo!
George Veltchev

Hi little bro,

From my hollyday adress an vry nice low pov and pose from the lizard.
Good of sharpness and details.
Fine colors.


Merhaba Hocam,

İlk anda görünce "kütüklü" fotolarınızdan sandım.:) Notları okuyunca ikna oldum. O fotolarınız da çok güzeldi. Kıbrıs endemiklerine devam. Şu değişik renkli koca engereği de merak ettim. Yayınlık durumu varsa eminim TN'ye hemen düşmez.

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2010-12-05 11:36]
  • [+]

Hi Bayram,very nice compositions and impressive sharpness and colors...when you see a reptil your camera give the best..ehehe...thanks for share,have a nice week,Luciano

Ciao BBB. Magnificent playing of light/shadows and razor details. The best DOF as possibile MF with beautiful natuiral colours.


  • Great 
  • cirano Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 997 W: 0 N: 944] (13609)
  • [2010-12-05 12:02]
  • [+]

harika bir odaklama ile muhteşem bir alan derinliği elde etmişsin.Pozu ve renkleri ayrıca göz alıcı.Gerçek bir fotoğraf bu.Eline emeğine sağlık dostum.
Bi slavên germ,

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2010-12-05 12:29]
  • [+]

Iyi aksamlar Bayram dostum,
Ahh a fine capture of one of my favourite species of Lacertids, as here a female with the nice low POV showing her features with excellent sharpness and natural colours in great lighting. Interesting to see that the female also has a little bluish tinge on the lower flanks.
Thanks and have a good week MF,

Merhaba sevgili arkadaşım,
Very good capture of this beautiful endemic lizards. Nice exposure. Not easy with the strong light and shadow as we can see on this photo. The colours and the smile of the female is fantastic. I'm sure she remember you, looking for her, like a paparazzi! Your garden is a nice place to observe wildlife! I wish you a sweet night,

Hello Bayram,
A lovely lizard with splendid colours. Excellent details and focus.
The temperature in Romania is 0 degree. I will see such beautiful animals
only in next summer. Have a nice week!

Bayram her resim muthis guzel cikiyor kamerandan...Renkleriyle, durusuyla detaylariyla ve de verdigin bilgilerle muthis bir kompozisyon cikiyor ortaya..Sunum mukemmel...Sanki ozel bir poz vermis gibi sana...Enteresan..Kutlarim..Yarin ne var sirada acaba...
Iyi geceler..

  • Great 
  • zetu Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 967 W: 26 N: 3888] (16941)
  • [2010-12-05 13:26]

Hello Bayram
Wonderful capture of this lizard with great details and vivid colors

Dayi yine bu guzel i baska acidan goruntuledin..Harika olmus, bakis ve durusuyla burdayim diyor...Her zamanki gibi muthis bir kare..Ellerine saglik dayicim.Selamlar, saygilar

hello Bayram

as always this is another great shot of the lizard,
very fine POV, DOF, superbly focused with
great sharpness and details, very beautiful light,
great expression with lovely eye-contact of the subject,
only one thing Bayram. you should give more space
in the bottom part of the image and less space
in the upper side of the image, not the darker
sides of the background but the lighter sides
of the background it is a little bit disturbing,



Merhaba Hocam,
Kıbrıs endemiğini çok güzel yakalamışsınız. Duruşu hem tatlı hem de desen ve renklenmeyi çok güzel sergiliyor, elinize sağlık.
Saygılarımla, Naşit

Hallo Bayram,
a superb picture of this lizard, excellent sharpness and splendid colours, a very beautiful composition from an excellent POV
Best regards

This is another amazing lizard capture my friend Bayram. The pose with the eye looking at the camera is amazing. Details around the head and front legs are flawless in pleasing framing. Nicely done with excellent documentation.
Thanks and kind regards - Jusni

  • Great 
  • tuslaw Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2754 W: 282 N: 4931] (19883)
  • [2010-12-05 18:16]

Hello Bayram,
A gorgeous lizard with a sleek body and beautiful coloration. I like the composition as it looks like you were at eye level as he came sneaking out from his hiding place. Wonderful detail and good DOF. Well done!!

  • Great 
  • joska Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 806 W: 0 N: 4092] (22535)
  • [2010-12-05 22:29]

Szia Baratom Bayram,
Splendid photo of this nice Lisar, endemic species from Cyprus, TFS! Have a nice day!

Notuyla 4/4 lük bilimsel ve estetik bir çalışma olmuş Bayram hocam. Emeklerinize sağlık. Saygılarımla

Hallo Bayram
What a beauty this is, and how friendly it looks. (Do you think reptiles also have friendly personalities?, because this Cyprus Lizard really looks very happy. The different coloured scales are beautifully seen and the ones on its belly is pretty to me, and reminds me a lot of the belly of a snake. Great point of view in which you have captured it with its twisted body. Once again great photography of an interesting species. Thanks for sharing.
Best regards.

Hello Bayram,
I like this composition with a great control over the DOF and the sharp details on the skin of this beautiful lizard

Günaydın hocam. karanlıktan aydınlığa çıkarken sizi farkedip az yan çizmiş gibi geldi bana:)
Çok tatlı bir poz ve göz teması oldu. Elinize sağlık.

Yakalanmış gibi bir hali var sanki:) çok hoş.
selamlar, saygılar hocam.

  • Great 
  • foozi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2791 W: 0 N: 6696] (25839)
  • [2010-12-06 2:19]

Merhaba MF Prof. Bayram,
what a beautiful lizard shown in good shiny skin. THe deatails are splendid and the lighting is rightly done.
Very fine skin well seen.


A beautiful macro-study of this fine female individual Bayram, from a good vantage point and via excellent light management, which resulted in a pretty diagonal composition. Good work indeed!

Ciao Bayram, great capture of wonderful lizard on a beautiful blurry BG, splendid light, fine details, superb sharpness and fantastic colors, very well done my friend, ciao Silvio

Merhaba hocam, gerçekten güzel bakış atmış size. Notlar adeta birilerine ders verir gibi:) ellerinize sağlık.

Bayram bey merhabalar,
Wonderful image of this lizard, fine presentation, beautiful light and superb BG
(Yiannis'in koyduğu farklı bir tür mü?isimleri farklı geldi)

hello Bayram
very nicepose with good sharpness and beautiful colours
great shot Bayram
greeting lou

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2010-12-06 8:47]

Hello Bayram,
Great photo of this lizard taken from a perfect POV. Very beautiful natural light and colours. The sharpness and details are fantastic. Good DOF and composition.

  • Great 
  • zulfu Gold Star Critiquer [C: 685 W: 0 N: 2] (43)
  • [2010-12-06 9:24]

Hocam poz çok güzel. galiba sizi son anda fark etti merakla ne oluyor diye bakmış.

Selamlar sayın hocam,
bu ne güzellik böyle,
harika renkler,
Bakış açısı çok şirin worksop da enfes olmuş.
Elinize sağlık

Quiteva nice use of lighting. You had it all going for you in this...one of your specialties in a special land which you grew up in and nearby.

  • Great 
  • eng55 Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1256 W: 42 N: 1976] (5892)
  • [2010-12-06 23:45]
  • [+]

Günaydın Bayram Hocam,
Bu açıdan da mükemmel görüntülemişsin.Detaylar,renkler,göz teması harika olmuş.Selamlar Dostum,ellerine sağlık..

excellent scene moment POV and certainly photo!
TFS Nasos

  • Great 
  • Luis52 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1175 W: 8 N: 4240] (15809)
  • [2010-12-07 14:47]

Hola Bayram.
Exelente la foto de hoy. Gran nitidez pues se aprecian finamente los detalles en la piel de esta lagartija
Saludos Bayram

Que hábilmente te recreaste en el motivo Bayram !
Muy bien trabajadas las tres partes de esta fotografía:
- el fondo, liso y adecuado para el buen contraste.
- el reptil, bien enfocado e iluminado, con pose además excelente.
- la base, de textura bien captada.
Además de todo esto, el ángulo de diparo es impresionante y efectivo,
magnificando aún más si cabe esta lagartija Chipriota.

Un abrazo: Josep Ignasi.

  • Great 
  • Adanac Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1273 W: 1 N: 6188] (21378)
  • [2010-12-07 19:29]

Hello Bayram,
This lizard has incredible skin patterns and colours and your great camera work has captured them perfectly.

Hola Bayram

Una bella imagen de este pequeño lagarto de colores estupendos y muy parecido a las lagartijas que tenemos nosotros. Una composición bien hecha.

Un saludo de Antonio

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2010-12-13 7:55]

Hello Bayram,
A beautiful capture of this fine Lizard from your 'homeland'! I live the composition, the light and the colours and details of the markiongs are very sharp too. An interesting note too!
TFS and best wishes, Ulla

Hello Bayram,
another very interesting image, light, colors and details very beautiful. Another nice picture. Best regards, Paolo

And a beauty it is Bayram.
I especially like this POV revealing the colorful side patterns & bluish belly.
Well done!

Dear Bareatom,

Fantastic post. Beautiful lights / shadows, gorgeous colors and sharpness, fantastic composition. I really like the way how you placed this lizard beauty into the pic. The WS photos are fine, too, and your note, as always, is very interesting. Congrats for the nice photoset and of course tfs.

Have a great Christmas (if you celebrate it - sorry for my ignorance) and festive season, friendly hugs to you & your loved ones, László

  • Great 
  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2010-12-29 11:19]

Hi Bayram.
Simply stunning picture and fantastic presentation of this amazing species. Diagonal composition is key point of the shot and its perception. DOF is also great. Left diagonal as well as main hero are crisp sharp. Strong sunlight underlines a fine colouarion of the lizard greatly. Simple colour and texture of substrate plays the same role. Top-right diagonal create a pleasantly smoothed and coloured BG. Both part of the shot are absolutely harmonious. Top-quality image. Thanks a lot and best regards.

The shot is stunning! I like the way you've played with the light here!

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