Table 1: observations on Aragats and Arailer mountains

 

Reptiles & amphibians

 

06-2012

 

 

 

Marsh frog

Pelophylax ridibundus

2

Green Toad

Bufo viridis

1

Lemon-yellow tree frog

Hyla savignyi

calling

Levant Green Lizard

Lacerta media

5

Caucasus Green Lizard

Lacerta strigata

3

 

Darevskia nairensis

>10

Dahl’s whip snake

Platyceps najadum

1

Schmidt’s whip snake

Hierophis schmidti

1+1 DOR

Transcaucasian rat snake

Zamenis hohenackeri

4

Erivanian meadow viper

Vipera eriwanensis

2 +1 DOR

Blunt-nosed viper

Macrovipera lebetina

1 DOR

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other highlights

 

 

 

 

 

Rose-coloured Starling

Sturnus roseus

>30

Red-billed Chough

Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax

1

Alpine Accentor

Prunella collaris

1

Shore Lark

Eremophila alpestris

3

Bonnelli’s Eagle

Hieraaetus fasciatus

1

 

 

 

  • Arm12_00773_reis plannen

    http://www.klooiplek.eu/images/trips/preview/1170.jpg

    Planning the trip in the apartment of Marine, Samvel and Anni. Left to right: Marine, Bart, Ronald, Samvel, Guido and Arjan. Where's Ben? (behind the lens).

    Arm12_00773_reis plannen
  • Armenië_k-2012©BartSiebelink2012-4

    http://www.klooiplek.eu/images/trips/preview/1137.jpg

    An afternoon drive through busy Yerevan. The carwash is also the place where people have their oriental rugs cleaned. There's one hanging over the door.

    Armenië_k-2012©BartSiebelink2012-4
  • jurken406

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    The temptations of booming Yerevan.

    jurken406
  • Arm12_01034_swifts and electric wires

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    Another impression of Yerevan: electric wires and swifts chasing insects between flat buildings made of volcanic tuff.

    Arm12_01034_swifts and electric wires
  • Yerevan-metall©BartSiebelink

    http://www.klooiplek.eu/images/trips/preview/1211.jpg

    These vividly painted metal weather-proof containers can be seen all over the country.

    Yerevan-metall©BartSiebelink
  • Armenië©BartSiebelink2012-3

    http://www.klooiplek.eu/images/trips/preview/1138.jpg

    Our first afternoon trip to Mount Aragats, with an elevation of 4,090 m the highest point in Armenia. On the road through these scenic pasture lands we found in the late afternoon one Vipera eriwanensis that was freshly caught by a car.

    Armenië©BartSiebelink2012-3
  • Arm12_00784

    http://www.klooiplek.eu/images/trips/preview/1186.jpg

    Bart and Guido have spotted something in a bush near Amberd fortress, a bit higher up the same road.

    Arm12_00784
  • slangenzoekenbijklooster612

    http://www.klooiplek.eu/images/trips/preview/1114.jpg

    More searching in the vicinity of Amberd. In the background S. Astvatsatsin (or Vahramashen) Church. A great setting for a herpetologist!

    slangenzoekenbijklooster612
  • P1050485_RL

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    Photographing Zamenis.

    P1050485_RL
  • Zamenis_Hohenackeri©Bart_Siebelink

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    Zamenis hohenackeri leaving its shelter.

    Zamenis_Hohenackeri©Bart_Siebelink
  • Zamenis_Hohenackeri©BartSiebelink

    http://www.klooiplek.eu/images/trips/preview/1141.jpg

    We found several young Zamenis hohenackeri on the slopes around the fortress. At first glance they resembled Coronella, but as you can see the head is notably different.

    Zamenis_Hohenackeri©BartSiebelink
  • hogesneeuw_RL

    http://www.klooiplek.eu/images/trips/preview/1191.jpg

    Working our way up on Mount Aragats. At his elevation we saw several horned larks (the Caucasian sub-species, Eremophila alpestris penicillata).

    hogesneeuw_RL
  • Armenië©BartSiebelink2012-12

    http://www.klooiplek.eu/images/trips/preview/1139.jpg

    Sunset casted a spectaculair light on the evening clouds, adding an ominous lustre to the desolate landscape near Lake Kari, at 3200 m a.s.l.

    Armenië©BartSiebelink2012-12
  • Armenië_Aragats©BartSiebelink2012-11

    http://www.klooiplek.eu/images/trips/preview/1136.jpg

    Wuthering heights at 3200 meter a.s.l.

    Armenië_Aragats©BartSiebelink2012-11
  • Arm12_00804_BV

    http://www.klooiplek.eu/images/trips/preview/1190.jpg

    Armenian food is a delight, especially when it is freezing outside. This great meal was waiting for us in a small restaurant. Meals are typically accompanied by lavash (flatbread), fresh herbs and vegetables. The famous Hash (in the bowl below) was very special, although a bit heavy to some of us.

    Arm12_00804_BV
  • Arm12_00940_BV

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    Having a chat with the gypsy family that watched our cars while we hiked up Mount Arailer.

    Arm12_00940_BV
  • Armenie©BartSiebelink2012

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    Giant poppies (Papaver pseudo-orientale) caught the attention on Arailers' grassy slopes. The hearts of these flowers were teeming with pollinating beetles that scratched the red color off with their tiny claws.

    Armenie©BartSiebelink2012
  • Arailer©BartSiebelink

    http://www.klooiplek.eu/images/trips/preview/1212.jpg

    Descending from mt Arailer. Armed with viper-proof leather gloves and clamps for the larger species i.e. Macrovipera lebetina and Montivipera raddei, both of which we dipped. Too hot already. But Lacerta media was abundant on these grassy slopes.

    Arailer©BartSiebelink
  • L-media-ararat©BartSiebelink

    http://www.klooiplek.eu/images/trips/preview/1231.jpg

    A female Lacerta media, against the backdrop of the iconic Ararat (admittedly the lizard was handled for a moment in order to make this picture).

    L-media-ararat©BartSiebelink
  • eriwaniensis612

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    Finally we found a small specimen of Vipera eriwanensis too.

    eriwaniensis612
  • Arailer©BartSiebelink

    http://www.klooiplek.eu/images/trips/preview/1163.jpg

    Us descending the gentle slopes of mt. Arailer. Aside of the dirt road at the horizon you can (hardly) see a nomadic basis with yourts.

    Arailer©BartSiebelink