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Stellagama stellio

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA REPTILIA SQUAMATA AGAMIDAE

Scientific Name: Stellagama stellio
Species Authority: (Linnaeus, 1758)
Common Name(s):
English Starred Agama
Synonym(s):
Agama stellio subspecies picea Parker, 1935
Lacerta stellio Linnaeus, 1758
Laudakia stellio (Linnaeus, 1758)
Stellagma stellio (Linnaeus, 1758) [misspelling of generic name]
Taxonomic Notes: This species, formerly in the paraphyletic genus Laudakia, was assigned as the type (and presently sole) species of the new genus Stellagama by Baig et al. (2012). While this wide-ranging lizard, which presently has seven recognized subspecies (although this number varies according to different authors), is considered likely to be a species complex, "more extensive work is still required before splitting the S. stellio complex" (Baig et al. 2012), as most work to date has been morphological and genetic research is needed to clarify divisions in this taxon (Baig et al. 2012). S. stellio daani was previously synonymized with the nominate form, but its distinctiveness was recognized by Almog et al. (2005), and it is considered a distinct subspecies in the review of Laudakia conducted by Baig et al. (2012).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2012
Date Assessed: 2012-02-06
Assessor(s): Amr, Z.S.S., Al Johany, A.M.H., Akarsu, F., Üzüm, N., Kumlutaş, Y., Baha El Din, S., Lymberakis, P., Hraoui-Bloquet, S., Ugurtas, I.H., Werner, Y.L., Disi, A.M., Tok, V., Sevinç, M., Sadek, R., Crochet, P.-A., Kaska, Y., Avci, A. & Yeniyurt, C.
Reviewer(s): Cox, N.A. & Bowles, P.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Cox, N.A.
Justification:
This species is listed as Least Concern in view of its wide distribution, tolerance of a broad range of habitats, presumed large population, and because it is unlikely to be declining fast enough to qualify for listing in a more threatened category.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species ranges from Greece and Turkey (with a northern range limit in Anatolia of 39ºN; reports from further north are in error - Almog et al. 2005) to Syria, Lebanon, northwestern Iraq, northern Saudi Arabia, northern and western Jordan, Israel and northern Egypt (and introduced west of the Nile). In Greece it is found in northern mainland (mainly in Kentriki Makedonia) where it was possibly introduced, and on the islands of Corfu in the Ionian Islands, the Cyclades (Mykonos, Rhineia, Delos, Paros, Despotiko, Antiparos), Naxos and eastern Aegean islands, and islands close to the Turkish mainland (Lesbos, Chios, Samos, Ikaria and Rhodes). It is also present in Cyprus, where it is represented by the endemic subspecies S. stellio cypriaca, and it has been introduced to Malta (Arnold 2003). It occurs from sea level up to 1,900 m asl.
Countries:
Native:
Cyprus; Egypt; Greece; Iraq; Israel; Jordan; Lebanon; Saudi Arabia; Syrian Arab Republic; Turkey
Introduced:
Malta
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: It is generally a very common species. In Egypt the species is declining. The populations in mainland Greece were probably introduced after 1500. It is a common species in Saudi Arabia and Jordan.
Population Trend: Stable

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This is a diurnal species that is found in a variety of Mediterranean, arid and semi-arid habitats, always in rocky areas. Populations are often present in rocky mountainous and coastal regions. It can be found on rocks, trees, buildings and other habitats that it can climb on. The females lay from three to 12 eggs per clutch (Disi 2002). In north Sinai it can be found in cultivated areas such as orchards (S. Baha El Din pers. comm.). This lizard is largely herbivorous (Parker 1935).
Systems: Terrestrial

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: It is sometimes available in Europe in the pet trade.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There generally appear to be no major threats to this widespread species. In Egypt it is threatened by overcollection for the pet trade and habitat loss in some areas through coastal development (S. Baha El Din pers. comm.).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: It is present in many protected areas. It is protected by national legislation in Israel. In Egypt, there is a need for further research into the impacts of harvesting on this species. Regulation and monitoring of the trade in this species in Egypt may be needed.

Citation: Amr, Z.S.S., Al Johany, A.M.H., Akarsu, F., Üzüm, N., Kumlutaş, Y., Baha El Din, S., Lymberakis, P., Hraoui-Bloquet, S., Ugurtas, I.H., Werner, Y.L., Disi, A.M., Tok, V., Sevinç, M., Sadek, R., Crochet, P.-A., Kaska, Y., Avci, A. & Yeniyurt, C. 2012. Stellagama stellio. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 29 August 2014.
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