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The Beauty of the little things

Updated: Apr 3, 2019

When we think of endangered species and habitats, we tend to think of something bigger, thats not always the case



Some of these smaller species of life have not always been noticed due to their size. On our little island of Cyprus there is quite a few of these small species, and their numbers keep falling rapidly, due to many of our fellow citizens turning a blind eye

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“Great things are done by a series of small things brought together.” -Vincent Van Gogh

Without the biodiversity that was once present in the wild, and the effect people have on the environment, we slowly loose the unique beauty of our natural habitats. The following flowering plants are found nowhere else in the world apart from a few secluded places on our island.



The three rarest plants in Cyprus



Erysimum kykkoticum


Roughly 800 of these exist in one subpopulation.


A woody plant discovered developing in the crevices of volcanic rocks or now and then on vertical banks of forgotten mountain tracks, normally on eastern or northern slopes, at an elevation of 350-470 m. It is found with Calabrian Pine (Pinus brutia), Brilliant Oak (Quercus alnifolia) and different bushes, growing on steep cliff sides.


This species is a primitive individual from the Erysimum family, most firmly identified with the Erysimum cheiri group of species. It is quite a large plant that can be mistaken for a few types of Euphorbia or Matthiola which additionally develop on cliff faces. One evident way to discern this species is that its leaves are moderately large and spoon-shaped.


Forest fires are a real danger for this species. The species is additionally affected by drawn out dry spells, human interferance and road construction.




Cyprus Tulip (Tulipa cypria)


The number of individuals was estimated at 2,000 in the most recent study in 2009, yet in 2007 the population was measured at an excess of 6,000. The actual extent of the population is obscure.


Tulipa cypria is endemic to Cyprus where it can be found within three areas with a territory of inhabitance of 44 km2. The populace measure has been accounted for to be in excess of 6,000 people with an obscure pattern. It is susceptible to overgrazing, overcollection, urbanization, and agricultural herbicides. The quality and degree of its living space are declining and the species is in this way seen as endangered.


Tulipa cypria is a bulbous herb which grows in grain fields, medows and open Juniperus phoenicea shrubland.


This species has been decamated by overgrazing, overcollection, urban expansion, poor recovery and by agricultural herbicides. The practice of slash and burn agricultural methods is affecting this plant also.




Akamas Centaury (Centaurea akamantis)


Periodic counts and visual estimations of the populace that were recorded since 1989 show that the populace is pretty much stable yet research is required so as to affirm this. The subpopulations are viewed as extremely divided given the plants habitat in isolated canyons.


The populace was measured at 550 plants and were highly separated. A report on the species was assessed to be 590 plants, slowly increasing to 800 by the year 2013.


It is a subshrub or semi-woody herbaceous plant (spreading into a bush in later development;) that colonizes steep and moist limestone precipices. It is described by a very long blossoming and fruiting period. It tends to be found in calcareous rough inclines with chasmophytic vegetation, in crevices of shaded limestone precipices between an elevation of 75-150 m.


Plucking of the flowers represents a genuine danger, despite the fact that it isn't allowed in these zones and fines are forced by the Forestry Department. Further, soil disintegration compromises the species' feasibility, causing the environment to be an unsettling influence which diminishes the quality and amount of soil containing the seeds of the plant.


The disintegration is the aftereffect of the chasm's geographical structure. Overgrazing (by goats) is a critical parameter which exasserbates the disintegration of the soil because of the trampling and overgrazing of plants, yet this just influences a small number of the plant population, where the plants are exposed to goats. A

comparative situation is found at the other locations where this plant is found.


Give a comment below and suggest what actions we should follow to help these rare plants endure.

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13 Pigasou, Agious Omologites, Nicosia

1087, Cyprus

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Tel: 70088388

Fax: 22311136

email: info@aimsustainability.org

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