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Pale Agama - 1st on TN

Pale Agama - 1st on TN
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: 2010-07-12
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, 1/500 seconds
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): RARE or SIGNIFICANT contributions to TN 1, Syrian Herpetofauna, Herpetofauna of the Middle East [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2010-07-22 18:03
Viewed: 6968
Favorites: 3 [view]
Points: 58
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Trapelus pallidus (Agama pallida) (Pale Agama)

A chunky beauty which we encountered with it in As Sholah (Syrian Desert, Dayr Az Zawr). The temperature under shadow of my jeep was 48 oC. This is the 1st shot of the species on TN.

TFL and Have a nice WE!

©Bayram GÖÇMEN, All Rights Reserved.


Pale Agama is distributed from northern Egypt through Sinai, Israel, Jordan, Syria, Iraq and northern Saudi Arabia to Kuwait. Its habitat is open flat desert and semidesert areas, often with scarce vegetation; in the basalt desert also in flat stony habitats. It is a medium-sized terrestrial agamid with a broad triangular head, long extremities and flattened body. The head is convex, short and wide, distinctly longer than broad. Nostrils are barely above the canthus rostralis, which is indistinct; nasal shield flat. Upper head scales convex, occipital not enlarged. T pallidus agnetae differs in having a fringe of 3-4 distinct spines situated on the upper edge of the ear opening, pointing mostly downwards. These scales are lacking in the nominotypic form. Ear opening is smaller than eye opening, elongate, nearly twice as long as high. There is no gular pouch. The body is depressed. Dorsal scales are very small, irregular, faintly imbricate, indistinctly keeled; intermixed with enlarged keeled or spiny scales. Ventral scales smooth, imbricate, in some specimens slightly keeled. Limbs are relatively long, tibia longer than the skull. The third toe is shorter than the fourth. Tail is circular in cross section, significantly longer than head and body. Males possess a double row of preanal pores and have a distinctly enlarged tail basis. Coloration is variable, in the hottest periods of the day often very light (pallidus = pale), to minimise isolation and prevent hypertermia. Dorsum often with 4 dark cross-bands, each interrupted by an irregular whitish vertebral strike, ventral side whitish. Tail with about 13 dark cross-bars. Populations from the black lava desert often attain a dark cryptic coloration. The head and back of males of some populations is during the mating period bluish, gravid females often have an orange head and ventral side of the tail. The largest measured Jordanian specimen (a male) attained a total length of 190 mm. it is probable, that it can exceed 200 mm of total length.

Pale Agama strictly diurnal and heliophilous, terrestrial species. Dominant males display themselves on the top of stones, even during the hottest hours of the day, when they are often the only visible animals in the desert. When disturbed, they run at top speed with the tail slightly curved upwards, and then stop a few meters away, hugging the ground and relying on their superb camouflage. To prevent midday overheating in summer, they climb small bushes of desert plants and rest 10-30 centimetres above the hot substrate. The breeding season starts in May or June, females lay probably more clutches per year. Detailed data on reproduction are lacking, first juveniles appear in July. It evidently hibernates (though with interruptions) in December or January. The diet is composed of small desert invertebrates, often with a predominance of ants. They can be occasionally observed sitting nearby an ant nest and feeding on individuals from a stream of ants passing to and from a nest. A specific rain-drinking behaviour has been reported, similar to that in some other members of this genus. When raining, these agamids display a stereotype posture involving depression of head and concomitant elevation of hindquarters, so that the caudal part of the dorsum is the highest part of the body. Head is depressed, sometimes touching the substrate or stone and the tongue is protruded repeatedly. The body axis is extremely sheered and water collected by the dorsum accumulates on rostrum forming a drop, which is drunk by regular opening of mouth and protruding of tongue.


1. Göçmen, B. (Unpub. results). The results of herpetological trips.
2. Disi, A. M., Modry, D., Necas, P. & Rifai, L. (2001). Amphibians and Reptiles of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. Edition Chimaira, 408 pp.
3. Esterbauer,H. (1985). Zur Herpetofauna Südwestsyriens. Herpetofauna 7 (38): 23-34.

Dis. Ac., bahadir, cypturk, nkasot, maurydv, anemone, siggi, montivipera, cirano, albert, Miss_Piggy, CeltickRanger, meyerd, marius-secan, yasemin, caspian has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To meyerd: Hi Dietrichboreocypriensis 1 07-23 11:29
To lousat: Hehe...CatherineD 1 07-23 10:03
To omereser: slm - T. lessonaeboreocypriensis 1 07-23 04:43
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Critiques [Translate]

Hocam Günaydın, nefis bir Trapelus türü.Biraz da tombul. Baş bölgesi biraz komik duruyor. Ellerinize sağlık hocam.

Hi and good Morning Dayi. This lizard is so cute. Looks like he was watching you.
Nice colors and great sharpness. Very good POV. TFS.

  • Great 
  • joska Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 806 W: 0 N: 4092] (22535)
  • [2010-07-22 22:54]

Hi Baratom Bayram,
Another splendid photo of one Animal of desert, now of this Agama, TFS!

Hello Bro Bayram,

Amazing reptile this is. Almost same color as that of the wooden log. amazing capture. Superb clarity. Nice eye contact too..

Very well done!


Çok güzel bir agamid Bayram hocam. Her zamanki gibi güzel bir katkı. Suriye'nin zenginliklerini de Dünya sayenizde izleyecek. Sadece Suriye taramasıyla bile TNde çok az fotoğraf çıkıyor. Belliki hiç bakılmaış. Emeklerinize sağlık.

Hallo MF Batram,
congratulations on this first on TN; very beautiful and interesting capture, excellent POV, very good sahrpness with fine detail, marvellous natural colours, a very pleasing close composition
Best regards

Günaydın dostum,
Very successfull trip in Syria it seems... Great capture of the queen of the desert. Amazing adaptation to this hostile habitat and perfect camouflage! I imagine it was difficult to approach her in this hot. Have a nice day,

Hocam çok şirin bir agamid türü. TN de ilk olmasının ötesinde teknik olarak da muhteşem bir çalışma olmuş. Suriye'nin de biyoçaşitliliğini sizden öğreniyoruz. Öok teşekkürler hocam.

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2010-07-23 0:34]

Hello MF Bayram,
wonderful pose of this lizard, enjoying the sun.Fantastic light and vivid colours.
I like your DOF, very good POV and very well framed.Very good focus too.
Best regards Siggi

Hi Bayram,a first time is always a great satisfaction,very nice case of camouflage whit this strange and humorous reptil,a usual great quality of sharpness and colors,pay attention at Catherine,she want to steal the throne of reptile expert..ehhe....have a nice day! Luciano

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2010-07-23 0:42]

Hello Bayram,
It sure is a beauty! Great quality in every way. Fantastic!
Congratulations on another novelty for TN.

Ciao Amico Bayaram, an other great first on TN ofa very strange creature, I never see before, thanks, good capture on a lovely blurry BG, wonderful monochromatic colors, fine details and splendid sharpness, very well done my friend, have a good week end, ciao Silvio

hello my friend,
I admire every day and your amazing pictures again. I think it's fantastic in such a beautiful landscape and surroundings to photograph, so I envy you.
Once again you have here is a fantastic photo set that is unparalleled.
thank you and a wonderful weekend
best regards from germany

really nice agama, gretings Ori

woww.. hocam sayenizde bir Trapelus türü daha gördük. Yarın öbürgün Türkiye'den de yeni kayıt verir iseniz hiç şaşırmam.
Muhteşem bir sunum olmuş hocam. Ellerinize ve emeklerinize sağlık.


Dostum merhaba,
Bunlardan bizim bölgede sanırım çok var hatta benim de bir kaç karem var.harika bir çekim ve TN'ye harika bir katkı olmuş.Eline emeğine sağlık.
Bi slavên germ,

Hello Bayram,
Congratulations for posting this novelty on TN
A great close-up on this pale agama, I guess that it was not easy to see it!

Suriye'den ilginç bir Trapelus fotosu. Bu bizim Trapelus'a desen olarak benzemiyor. Bireccik'te çalışırken bir öğrencim Kuyucak köyünde yakaladığı bir T. ruderatus getirmişti. Onun sırtında L. stellio'da olduğu gibi dört kadar desen vardı. Bazı yayınlarda T. lessonae geçiyor. O sinonim mi yoksa başka bir tür mü acaba?

Ciao BBB. Best compliments for the new! An hard wotk to obtain so good contrats betwen similar tones. So very wekll done MF!


Hallo Bayram
What a lovely reptile. The variation of colours on its skin is beautiful. Incredible sharpness and detail. Superb texture as well - I can almost feel the rough skin. Its plumpish body is fascinating to look at. Thanks for sharing this 1st of its kind. Best regards.

hello Bayram

congratulations for this first one on TN, an excellent photo
with fine POV, fine focus excellent sharpness and details, TFS


Hi Bayram,
I just wondered whether you find anything living on the surface of a hot desert during the day but you explain that this Agama even likes such conditions (did you?). Anyway, a well presented animal, an interesting note and something we never heard of before, what more can we expect from TN? Thanks for this one, Bayram.
Best regards

No se como haces para encontrar tanta variedad de reptiles. Como siempre, un particular trabajo con el color, que dominas a la perfección, aunque en esta ocasión se te apoderó ligeramente de los colores, quedando estos algo blanquecinos en la parte superior del animal. Buen encuadre y disposición del Trapelus.
Saludos: J.Ignasi.

hello Bayram
congrat with the first time of this beauty on TN
great details and good pose
nice naturel colours
greeting lou

Hello Bayram,
Oustanding capture with superb colours, details and focus.
It is a very interesting reptile. Congratulation for this wonderful capture.

Bu acidan cok guzel.. kuyrucugu cok degisik.. bizim gurkudaciklarda yanlis hatirlamazssam halkaciklar var bununki biraz degisik. Bas bolgesi gercekten cok sevimli..kedi yavrusu gibi durur:)
Emegine saglik canim kardesim..herkesten selam.

  • Great 
  • foozi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2791 W: 0 N: 6696] (25839)
  • [2010-07-24 3:47]

Merhaba MF Prof. Bayram,
excellent capture. I dont know what to say about this stunning capture. The view might be normal, but the finding is amazing.
Well presented and lovely colours.
Your shots are enriching and full of academic insight.
Thanks for this sharing.


Merhaba Bayram hocam,

Çok ilginç bir agama türü.
Tüm detayları gösteren harika bir çalışma olmuş.
Elinize ve emeğinize sağlık.

Selam ve saygılarımla,

Hi little bro Bayram,

very actrative picure and always nice to be the first one. Fine brown colourtones.
How do you see tise agame, so well camouflaged.


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