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Finding Chameleon in Spain (1 Viewer)

John Cantelo

Well-known member
Hi all,

I finally managed to realise my ambition of seeing a Chameleon in Spain. For those that have not heard of the place the best site for the species in SW Spain is "Jardin Botanico Celistine Mutis" in Rota. Approach Rota from the north along the coastal road (that is from Chipiona NOT via the naval base). Not long after you reach the built up area look out for a small gated park on your right. The garden is opens at 10:00 and is closed 2-5, but opens again in the evening. The staff are evidently very proud of their guests and were VERY helpful - not only pointing us in the right direction but finding the animal for us.

I managed to get some good shots of the marvellous creature and, when I work out how to do it, I'll post some photos,

John
 
Hi all, I finally managed to realise my ambition of seeing a Chameleon in Spain. For those that have not heard of the place the best site for the species in SW Spain is "Jardin Botanico Celistine Mutis" in Rota. Approach Rota from the north along the coastal road (that is from Chipiona NOT via the naval base). Not long after you reach the built up area look out for a small gated park on your right. The garden is opens at 10:00 and is closed 2-5, but opens again in the evening.
John

Hi John.

The best place that I have found is at the Laguna El Portil, near Huelva.

Whenever I visit this site between late February and mid-June, it is almost guaranteed that I will find up to five of these delightful creatures and show them to my clients.

They can usually be found in the Spanish Broom trees, right beside the main bird observation point, but can be difficult to spot to the un-trained eye.
 
and here's the proof...
Picture taken on 30 may at Laguna el Portil near Huelva on a weeks tour with John Butler. Two male White-headed Ducks in the same Laguna!

André
 

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Mediterranean chameleon

The chameleon really is the ultimate European reptile. Its distribution is limited to the extreme south of Portugal and Spain (Andalucia only), Sicilliy, Malta, southern Greece, Crete and Cyprus. Cyprus is probably the best place to look for them, together with the agama and about a dozen species of snakes including the most toxic of all, the blunt-nosed viper.
Fergus

Hi all,

I finally managed to realise my ambition of seeing a Chameleon in Spain. For those that have not heard of the place the best site for the species in SW Spain is "Jardin Botanico Celistine Mutis" in Rota. Approach Rota from the north along the coastal road (that is from Chipiona NOT via the naval base). Not long after you reach the built up area look out for a small gated park on your right. The garden is opens at 10:00 and is closed 2-5, but opens again in the evening. The staff are evidently very proud of their guests and were VERY helpful - not only pointing us in the right direction but finding the animal for us.

I managed to get some good shots of the marvellous creature and, when I work out how to do it, I'll post some photos,

John
 
I found several Chameleons, including small babies, at Isla Christina on the Spain / Portugal border last year. They were in the dunes outside our holiday villa, and where my first. Fantastic creatures.
 
The chameleon really is the ultimate European reptile. Its distribution is limited to the extreme south of Portugal and Spain (Andalucia only), Sicilliy, Malta, southern Greece, Crete and Cyprus. Cyprus is probably the best place to look for them, together with the agama and about a dozen species of snakes including the most toxic of all, the blunt-nosed viper.
Fergus

I've always found the Eastern Med far superior to the west for reptiles and amphibians. I remember visiting North East Greece a couple of times in the late 1980s, and recorded 35 species on the first visit, including several Blunt-nosed Vipers and other snakes and three species of tortoise. Reptiles in general just seemed a lot more numerous than in the Western Med.

Must admit though, I'd forgotten that Chameleons occured there. I thought they were only in Iberia. I certainly didn't see any in Cyprus either.
 
What a smashing creature, John. Hope you can find one for us next Spring..

Sandra & Bob


I assume you mean John Butler & not me, but if we both happen to be in SW Andalucia (Cadiz province to be exact) I'd love to help you. The ones I saw in May were hard to see as it was so unseasonably cold (by Spanish standards) so I'm not sure when, given a more typical spring, the usually appear. The staff at the park were VERY helpful (they spoke no English - so it was all done by mimes!) so I recommend you try the site I mentioned,

John
 
Some photos of the wee beastie as I promised,

John
 

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What a smashing creature, John. Hope you can find one for us next Spring.. Sandra & Bob

Hi Sandra & Bob.

I will certainly do my best for you on your tour next year. April/May is just about the prime time for chameleons at El Portil, so I feel confident in finding a few for you.

Rebecca and I are both looking forward to your company again next year and hope that the weather will be kinder to you than last October

Regards.

John & Bec.
 
The chameleon really is the ultimate European reptile. Its distribution is limited to the extreme south of Portugal and Spain (Andalucia only), Sicilliy, Malta, southern Greece, Crete and Cyprus. Cyprus is probably the best place to look for them, together with the agama and about a dozen species of snakes including the most toxic of all, the blunt-nosed viper.
Fergus

Hello all!

Greece also has the only European population of African Camelion...


Cheers

Dimitris
 
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