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Sfakia is an area which, owing to the great natural terrain, has a large number of rare species of wild and tame animals. Let's look at the most important.

Aquila chrysaetos

This is the most powerful predator of Greece (ed. Aquila chrysaetos), with opening wings 185-220m. and body length of 75-90cm. When flies distinguished golden yellow throat and the long tail. The adult bird has a characteristic golden head and neck, the body and wings are uniformly dark underneath and over the wings is paler. In the queue are also lighter films. For its size is very agile predator, capable rushes to the ground at high speed. Usually hunt in pairs. The diet consists of a golden eagle birds and medium-sized mammals, such as pigeons, doves, kaliakoudes, partridges, rabbits and even turtles that searches the hillsides, in forest clearings and open areas. We call them 'Vitsilia'.

Capra aegagrus Creticus

The proud Cretan wild goat (Capra aegagrus Creticus), and known as the ibex, Cretan wild goat or ibex is an endemic subspecies of chamois and ibex unique form in Europe. The population declined dramatically during the German occupation as the sole food source of the rebels. In 1960 there were 200 people in the White Mountains, and so in 1962 the Samaria Gorge was declared a national park to protect it. To maintain subspecies, chamois have been transferred to the protected island Theodore of Chania. Today in an area 150,000 acres in and around the gorge, live about 700 people. The beasts have light dark hair which, during the mating season in October and November, it becomes lighter. Also on their back have a dark brown line from head to tail and have a great beard. In addition, they have two horns leaning back his head and approaching 1m in males. Their length reaches 1.30-1.40m and males reach 40kg. When you grow old, in their 10 years of color opens again, and usually live 11-12 years. The goat eats shoots, buds and leaves of shrubs and low trees, and grasses and broad-leaved herbs. Prefers rocky areas with steep slopes, since it can jump over 8 meters. Summer rises to higher altitudes, while in winter descends lower. The goat of Crete forming same-sex herds of up to 20 people, except during the breeding season, within which there is a clear hierarchy, with the older and physically larger people are sovereign. Breeding season formed harems, while small year follow females. They are very shy animals and often do not approach visitors. Finally, they found many murals Kri Kri, suggesting that the wild goat worshiped in antiquity. But even today remains one of the most powerful symbols of Sfakia and Crete.

Caretta Caretta

The Caretta turtle (scientific Caretta caretta) is the largest species of sea turtle in Greece. Occurs in our beaches, where going to let the eggs.


The bottlenose dolphin (scientific Tursiops truncates) or yperoodes dolphin is a common type of Greek seas, very popular around the world. You see traveling to Agia Roumeli or Gavdos by boat.

Erinaceus concolor

The hedgehog Eastern Europe (scientific Erinaceus concolor) and the Romanian Hedgehog (ed. Erinaceus roumanicus) are the two species of hedgehog living in Crete. The hedgehog is a widespread nocturnal mammal found from Europe to Siberia. It is very cute animal, also needs your attention at night.

Gypaetus barbatus

One of the rarest raptors hosting our country is the vulture, a bird of mountain ecosystems. Its scientific name is Gypaetus barbatus. Here Sfakia call him 'kananu' or 'Bone-eater'. The length reaches 1m. and wingspan can reach from 2.50 to 2.80 m The vulture weighs about 5-7 pounds. They are scavengers and is the only creature that feeds almost exclusively (70-90%) with bone. Throws from a high rocky cliffs, following them from behind with a spiral descent, a process which is repeated until finally break bones. Then eat the pieces starting from the medulla. Smaller bones swallows whole and stomach with powerful gastric juices (ph 1), can digest easily. The number has a fall due to the abandonment of pastoralism, since it means decreased and the corpses of sheep and goats were fed kind, which is why efforts are being made to reverse the situation. On the occasion of its existence, but mainly due to the breeding of 'kananu', the region of Sfakia and especially the band Asfendou-Kallikratis-sleeve joined to European forests NATURE'' 2000'' in 2001, along with many other species of animals and plants . In Skalotiano canyon or sleeves, nestles the largest number of couples across Europe. At the exit of the gorge north of the village Skaloti, you will be able to enjoy them, the observatory created there, working our municipality with the museum of natural history and ornithology section of the TUC. In the north side near the road for the sleeve, is installed and trough on increasing food of birds. Another point from where you can enjoy flights of large birds is the Aradainiotiko canyon and if you're lucky, you might see them make flights even under the bridge!

Hemidactylus turcicus

The gecko (ed. Hemidactylus turcicus) is one of the most common reptiles of Crete. The length reaches 10cm. At night the color is translucent. It feeds on small arthropods and usually preys on insects attracted to lights. We consider them good luck!

Lacerta trilineata

The kolisavra (Eds. Lacerta trilineata) is the largest lizard in Crete (and Greece), which has a bright green color. It is also known as tranosafra or prasinosafra. They are diurnal lizard that likes to move on the ground. It feeds on invertebrates, insects and smaller lizards and snakes. Kolisafres Females lay 6-20 eggs, which hatch in 30 days.

Lepus europaeus

The hare (scientific Lepus europaeus) is one of the most widespread mammals in Europe, which is present in large numbers throughout the island.

Martes foina bunites

The Cretan Zourida (scientific Martes foina bunites) or petrokounavo is a nice mammal, arboreal, nocturnal, carnivorous and fruitarian living solitary (outside the mating season) in crevices in tree hollows, in abandoned nests of birds of prey in desolate underground in sparse forests, shrublands and gorges

Meles meles arcalus

The badger of Crete or Arkalon (ed. Meles meles arcalus) endemic subspecies of the common badger. They are carnivorous mammal resembling bear with short legs and relatively long body (70-95 cm) and short tail (15 cm), while it reaches a weight of 20 kg. Animal is omnivorous, eating hares, rabbits, rats, mice, worms, roots, fruits, beetles, seeds, insects and snails. Generally prefers animal feed and not aggressive to humans. Lives in shallow tunnels that dimiougei himself with his front legs. It is a nocturnal animal, and why there are many accidents because of their slow gait, trying to cross the streets. Driving late at night and you may be able to view them.

Monachus monachus

The Mediterranean monk seal (ed. Monachus monachus) is one of the most endangered mammals in the world, with a few hundred people remaining. In our area are mostly found in Koutelos or seals, south of the village Nomikiana, in underwater caves where spawn.

Pelophylax cretensis

The Cretan frog (ed. Pelophylax cretensis or Rana cretensis) is one of the three endemic species of amphibians of Greece, which is found only on the island of Crete. Unfortunately in recent years the population has decreased significantly due to many factors. You will definitely see the magnificent area of Fragokastelo and elsewhere

Podarcis cretensis

The lizard of Crete (ed. Podarcis cretensis) is the only endemic species of lizard of the island. It is also known as the Aegean wall lizard of Crete, small kolisafra or klostidaki. Petite 7cm long lizard that lives mainly in rocky areas with brushwood, where he finds shelter among the rocks. When there are many rocks hidden in the brushwood. They are diurnal lizard feeds on a variety of small arthropods and other invertebrates (eg snails). Main enemies are snakes, hawks and small mammals.

Sperm whales

The sperm whale (scientific Physeter macrocephalus) is a unique kind of mammal found throughout the land. Especially in the Mediterranean, most conspecifics, some hundreds, live in very deep

Wildcat of Crete

The mysterious wildcat Crete (ed. Felis silvestris cretensis) or fourogatos endemic subspecies of the African wild cat is the only species of felines encountered in Greece. The body of fourogatou is larger than the common cats, and the male reaches 50cm in length and the tail 30cm. The tail is closer to the base and the edge bushier. It feeds on rabbits, birds, insects and rodents, while living in rocky areas and secluded forest at an altitude of 900-1200m. Finally begets 4-7 microns, 1-2 times a year. In our region is found only in Samaria. Occurs rarely and until 1996 where through traps photographed considered 'ghost'.