Unusual Winter Activity of Some Amphibian and Reptile Species Living in Bozcaada (Çanakkale, Türkiye)

Özgül C. N., Kurtul D., Gül Ç., Tosunoğlu M.

JOURNAL OF ANATOLIAN ENVIRONMENTAL AND ANIMAL SCIENCES, vol.7, no.3, pp.244-250, 2022 (Peer-Reviewed Journal)


Amphibian and reptile species, which are ectothermic animals, spend the winter months

underground depending on the seasonal change in temperate regions. The availability of nutrients is also an

important reason for the hibernation of these animal species. Ectothermic animals need higher air temperature

and body temperature after hibernation to be able to perform their vital activities such as reproduction,

feeding, escaping from predators. With the global climate change that is taking place, unusual winter activities

can be observed in amphibian and reptile species. In addition, global warming has a significant impact on

amphibians and reptiles, which leads to the fact that the species leaves hibernation earlier. As part of the

research, field works were carried out in Bozcaada, Çanakkale on 19 and 20 February 2022. During the field

studies, sampling was carried out for the detection of amphibian and reptile species, air temperature,

coordinates of the observed individuals, habitat characteristics in which they lived, and sex characteristics

were recorded. The captured specimens were subsequently released. In this study, Lissotriton schmidtleri,

Mauremys rivulata, Testudo graeca, Hemidactylus turcicus, Mediodactylus kotschyi, Ophisops elegans and

Ablepharus kitaibelii species in February and data on unusual winter activities were reported. Among the

species, winter activity was found for the first time in relation to Ablepharus kitaibelii. Determining the

unusual winter activity of ectothermal animals will contribute to the literature on the biology of species and

the effects of climate change.