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Oof! Too Hottttt!:)

Oof! Too Hottttt!:)
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: 2010-07-07
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, 1/320 seconds
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Syrian Herpetofauna, Turkish Herpetofauna, Herpetofauna of the Middle East [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2010-07-30 23:37
Viewed: 8397
Favorites: 2 [view]
Points: 72
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Laudakia stellio stellio (Spiny Lizard, Starred Agama or Hardun) [in Cyp. Turk. Gurkuda, Turk: Dikenli Keler]

During our Syrian trip we encountered the two subspecies of this rock beauty. In North and Middle Syria the nominotypic form exist, however in extreme south parts near the Jordanian border like Daraa and Bosra (As Suwayda) can meet with the race of L. s. picea and some intermadiate forms. Here you can see the nominotypic form of the species which I captured it in the 1st day of our Syrian trip around Harem (or Haram).

TFL and Have a nice WE!

©Bayram GÖÇMEN, All Rights Reserved.


Starred Agama is a middle-sized agamid lizard with a moderately depressed body. Total length reaches up to 35 cm, or slightly longer. The flat and triangular head is covered with asymmetrically distributed small scales and plates. Snout is longer than the distance eye-tympanum. Pupils are round. Spiny scales on the neck and sides of the head. The dorsum is covered with small and large scales. Ventral scales are smooth, callous glands, which are present in males, consist of 3-5 rows of modified scales in pre-cloacal position, and an isolated group of scales in the middle of abdomen, near umbilical scar. The tail is moderately depressed in its proximal part; the distal part is rounded or slightly oval in cross-section. The scales of the tail are arranged into distinct circular segments, each consisting of two whorls of enlarged mucronate (spiny) scales. The coloration is extremely variable, depending on race, sex, age and substrate.

Spiny lizard is widely distributed from Greece, Aegean islands, S Turkey, Cyprus, Lebanon, W Syria, N Iraq, Israel, NW Jordan, to Sinai and northern Egypt. Five subspecies of Laudakia stellio are recognised in addition to the nominotypic form within its wide range. Populations in Turkey belong to the nominotypic subspecies, L. s. stellio (S Turkey except Western parts and S Aegean islands, Syria, W Jordan, Israel and N. Sinai) and to L. s. daani (S Aegean islands and SW Turkey) . Evidently, there are intermediate forms in the contact zones between individual subspecies. Whereas in Cyprus an endemic subspecies, L. s. cypriaca lives. The important diagnostic features of the some races as follow:

L. s. stellio: It is characterized by a narrow mid-dorsal zone of enlarged scales with regular offshoots between the flank scales. These enlarged scales are keeled but not very spinose. Adult animals generally have SVL of 9-12 cm. Length of tail in relation to this length averaging 1.43. Coloration is rather variable. Generally a dark grayish, brownish ground colour of head and body, against which a pattern of 4-5 vertebral patches is outlined. Behind the head, at both sides before the shoulders, sometimes a black collar spot is present. Finger and toes are short. [15-18 subdigital scales under the 3rd finger, 17-23 under 4th toe].

L. s. daani: In Corfu and Sporades islands, and SW Turkey are darker and they have a bluish-grey head and body. The chin shows a clear spotted pattern.

L. s. cypriaca: It is characterized mainly by its long tail [Tail length reported on the snout-vent distance (SVL) ranges from 1.53-1.92, averaging 1.73. In other subspecies, this relation rarely exceeds 1.6.]. Finger and toes are long [19-22 subdigital scales under the 3rd finger, 22-28 under 4th toe]. In the dorsal scale arrangement, Cypriotic Spiny lizard resembles the nominotypic form. The small scales of the chin, especially in the region of the gular fold, are strongly spinose and in elder specimens there is a redish coloration on both head and body.

The other known subspecies L. s. picea from S Syria, N Jordan, & NE Israel; L. s. brachydactyla from S. Israel, SW Jordan, E Sinai & adjacent parts of Saudi Arabia; L. s. vulgaris from N Egypt] are distributed in southern Levantine regions.

During our trip to Syria, we encountered with L. s. picea in Daraa and As Suwayda regions (SW Syria). Differentiation of L. s. picea is based mainly on its unique colour: males are typicaly jet black, often with yellow to orange (sometimes brownish) cross bars on the tail, sometimes with traces of yellow to orange spots on dorsum and toes. Females (and juvenilles) are black, with bright rounded yellow to orange spots on the head and body, those on body are arranged in rather irregular transverse rows. Intermediate colour forms occur in contact zone between L. s. stellio and L. s. picea.

Frequents stone walls, rocky areas and olive groves, can easily climb both on trees and rocks. Feeds mainly on insects (ants and other hymenopterans, orthopterans, mantids, beetles, butterflies, spiders, scorpions, mollusks), but can also ingest some plant material. it is the most commonly encountered reptile species in the close vicinity of human settlements, dense populations occur even in large cities. It is a diurnal, heliophilous lizard. Both males and females form hierarchies and maintain territories. A dominant male perches on the highest point of his territory. Typical display behaviour consists of series of vertical movements of the head and cranial third of the body. The submissive animals reply by flattening of their bodies and pushing the heads towards the surface. This behaviour of females is often accompanied by lateral undulations of the tail. Seasonal activity depends both on the altitude and latitude. A female lays 8-14 eggs.

1. Göçmen, B. (Unpub. results). The results of herpetological trips.
2. Göçmen, B., Tosunoglu, M. & Taskavak, E. (2003). A Taxonomic Comparison of the Hardun, Laudakia stellio (Reptilia, Agamidae), Populations of Southern Turkey (Hatay) and Cyprus. Zoology in the Midle East, 28: 25-32
3. Disi, A. M., Modry, D., Necas, P. & Rifai, L. (2001). Amphibians and Reptiles of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. Edition Chimaira, 408 pp.
4. Budak, A. & Göçmen, B. (2005). Herpetology. Ege Üniversitesi Fen Fakültesi Kitaplar Serisi, No. 194, Ege Üniversitesi Basimevi, Bornova-Izmir, 226 pp. [2nd Edition, 2008].
5. 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.
6. Göçmen, B., Tok, C. V., Kaya, U. & Tosunoglu, M. (1996).A Preliminary Report On the Herpetofauna of Northern Cyprus. Turk. J. Zoology, 20 (suppl.): 161-176..
7. Esterbauer,H. (1985). Zur Herpetofauna Südwestsyriens. Herpetofauna 7 (38): 23-34.

anemone, Mamagolo2, LordPotty, haraprasan, siggi, CatherineD, cypturk, caspian, cirano, maurydv, nkasot, omereser, rommel, mwmod99, bahadir, SMYRNA, ferranjlloret, yasemin, marius-secan, CeltickRanger, rockisland, montivipera, Dis. Ac. has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To rockisland: :))boreocypriensis 1 08-01 21:48
To cirano: :)cirano 1 07-31 03:02
To anemone: Günaydınboreocypriensis 1 07-31 00:25
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Critiques [Translate]

Günaydın Bayram hocam. Muhteşem bir portre olmuş.Bacaklardki detaylardan diline ve gözlere kadar herşey çok güzel. Bilgiler de cabası. Bu aralar yanınıza uğrayacağım hocam kamera için. Umarım haftaya üniversitedesiniz. İyi tatiller.

nice "agama", greetings Ori

Günaydın Baryam dostum,
What a pretty gurkuda with aggressive pose - I guess why hehe...:) Very nice colours including some bluish on the legs. Very different than the L.stellio daani or L.stellio cypriaca that I already met. With the Syrian desert's sun, not only men became black! Have a nice day MF,

Hi Bayram,
This is really a stunning image. I like the way it's mouth is open and one can see it's tongue, it almost looks like it was getting very hot. Excellent good clear detail and beautiful colors. Very well done my friend and thanks for sharing.

Far out ! they just get better and better.
This one is also faultless.
What a spectacular beast,and capture.
Amazing work Bayram.
Cheers & TFS

Selam My Dear Friend,
A nice capture of this beautiful spiny lizard. Excellent composed portrait with sharp details. Thanks a lot for sharing. Have a nice weekend.

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2010-07-31 1:20]

Hello MF Bayram,
This is a stunning portrait of this Spiny Lizard. I'm amazed by those great details you caught and this superb exposure and moment caught! This is a great and very interesting picture.Best regards Siggi

hehe:) Catherine benzetmeyi cok guzel yapmis dayi:) Arabin gurkudasi da arapmis...haha. valla gulmekten karnim agridi. super cekim dayi. eline saglik.

Merhaba Bayram hocam,

Bu sefer Suriyeden tanıdık bir yüz.
Çöl güneşi bu bölgedeki dikenli kelerleri extra esmerletmiş anlaşılan :)
Ağzı açık dilli halini yakalamanız güzel zamanlama olmuş.
Detaylar ve çekim ise her zamanki gibi en iyisinden.
Elinize ve emeğinize sağlık.

Selam ve saygılarımla,

Gerçekten çok güzel,keyif veren bir kare olmuş.Gülmek bulaşıcıdır,derler,hayvanlardan bile bulaşıyor demek ki.:)O gülmüyor olsa bile gülüyor gibi görünüyor ve bu da yetiyor zaten bulaşmasına.Sabah sabah keyif verdi bu.Teşekkürler dostum.
Bi slavên germ,

Hallo MF Bayram,
another fantastic capture, outstanding sharpness and marvellous colours, excellent POV and DOF, a very nice composition with a spectacular posture of this Spiny Lizard.
Best regards

Bayram hocam Suriyeli gurkuda gerçekten yerindeki insanlar gibi arapcıkmış:) Zamanlamanız harika olmuş her zmanki gibi ve detaylar Göçmen kalitesinde. Emeklerinize sağlık.

Nominat ırkı ne güzel görüntülemişsiniz. Yalnız; bu gülme değil ısırma modunda gibi geldi bana.)) Birecik-Mağaralı köyünde bu ırktan bireyler boldu. Okul duvarlarında, damlarda gezinirlerdi. Bu arada yahoo mailinize benim kurbiklerden birkaçını gönderdim. Ne olur unutmayalım şunları :))

  • Great 
  • foozi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2791 W: 0 N: 6696] (25839)
  • [2010-07-31 3:45]

Merhaba MF Bayram,
wow..what a view. Red tongue and dark eye. so stunningly captured to render beauty and details of the head.
Really special...is this the one they called "dhab" in the middle east?


Ciao Bayram, superb portrait of fantastic lizard, amazing details, wonderful natural colors and splendid sharpness, very well done my friend, have a good week end, ciao Silvio

Ciao BBB. Magnificent work! Interesting dynamic situation with superb DOF, perfect details and great sharp. Bravo!


Hellow Bayram,
Good angle you have captured this lizard with sharpness and well exposed.Each scale is well presented and its unique colouration and patterns are well portrayed.

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2010-07-31 5:30]

Hello Bayram,
Very beautiful portrait of this lizard in great sharpness, details and lovely natural colours. Nice scene with the open mouth and a good visible tongue. Pleasing eye contact.
Have a nice weekend,

Where did you get so many shots of lizards Bayram? Impressive work, no doubt! Great contrast and well presented detail under difficult conditions! fantastic warm colors and amazing dept of field indeed! The chosen crop, pleasing the eye and complimenting the composition nicely my friend! Bravo!
George Veltchev

  • Great 
  • nagraj Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1618 W: 106 N: 3208] (15166)
  • [2010-07-31 5:32]

Fine details of the beautiful lizard captured in good lighting. tfs.

Bayram hocam ağzını açarak serinlemeye çalışan bu Hardunu tam zamanında görüntülemişsiniz:) Arkadaşların dedikleri gibi glüyormuş gibi bir ifade var yüzünde. Emeklerinize sağlık.
İyi pazarlar.


oof off kanki burasıda çok sıcak. Bizde ağzımızı böle açsak serinler miyiz:) haha.. şaka maka bizde çok sıcaklarda öyle davranıyoruz galiba. Ağzına sinek kaçarsa canına minnet bu kertenkelenin:)
Eline sağlık. İyi tatiller.

Hi, Bayram,
Excellent foreground of this reptile.

Bayram ayni bizim gurkudacik... Ama bu daha siyah:) bizimkiler kirmizili. Bizimkiler günesten sadece piserken demek Suriyedekiler yaniyor... benzetmeleri okudum..herkes ayni dusuncede. Eline saglik canim kardesim.. hepimizden selamlar ve iyi tatiller..

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2010-07-31 9:55]

Merhaba Bayram,
A superb capture L. stellio stellio. great to see it keeping kool with its mouth open!
Nice sharpness and colours in this fine lateral POV capture.
Thanks dostum and all the best,

hello Bayram
super sharpness picture with great details and good light
beautiful naturel colours
greeting lou

Hello Bayram,
Exceptional capture with perfect details, colours and POV.
It is a wonderful image of a very interesting Lizard.
Outstanding portrait.

Bella y profesional captura... en tu línea.
Abrazo Bayram.

what an expressive capture, you have the opportunity to found so many species... lucky you...

  • Great 
  • john1 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 122 W: 0 N: 439] (3410)
  • [2010-08-01 9:54]

Hi Bayram,

Excellent view and action shot of this Spiny Lizard, great sharpness and very good focus.
The colors and détails are splendid, great control of the light, TFS.
Have a good sunday.

hello Bayram

your photos are more and more great shots,
WOW ! for this close-up photo superbly
focused with great sharpness and details, TFS


Bayram hocam merhaba,
Özellikle kadrajı çok güzel bir fotoğraf ve gerçekten çok sıcak :)
Bu dilin dışarıda olması serinlemek için bir hareket mi acaba?
Emeğinize sağlık, nefis.
Selamlar, sevgiler

Bayram hocam zamanlamanız müthiş. O sıcakta serinlemek için tek seçenek bu olsa gerek. Emeğinize sağlık.


  • Great 
  • tuslaw Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2754 W: 282 N: 4931] (19883)
  • [2010-08-02 19:58]

Hello Bayram,
Great shot of this little guy who looks very hot at the moment. Excellent detail and nice low POV. The exposure is right on the money. Super job!! Very informative notes!

Selamlar sayın hocam,
harikabir davranış,
serinlemek için hayvan elindeden geleni yapıyor.
kompozisyon mükemmel.

Hi little bro,

another great shot from the master of the snakes, frogs and lizards.
Great pov and details.
Fine colours.


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