There is little wildlife on Kythera. Most wildlife species can be found in the more deserted areas, such as dells, and in areas where there is a lush plant life. There are mammals, birds, reptiles, invertebrates and others. Some of these species include hedgehogs (erinaceus concolor), small-footed bats (pipistrellus pipistrellus), rabbits (lepus capensis), mice (mus musculus) and stone martens (martes foina). Mammals used for breeding include sheep, goats, cows, pigs, as well as fowl (chickens and turkeys).
Kythera is a resting place for migratory birds that leave Greece at the beginning of winter to fly to Africa and towards the south. Some twenty species inhabit the island throughout the year. Permanent species include the house sparrow (Passer domesticus), the European goldfinch (Carduelis carduelis), the rock partridge (Alectoris graeca), the common raven (Corvus corax), the blue rock thrush (monticola salitarius), the Aegean seagull (Larus Audouinii), the common buzzard (Buteo buteo) and Eleonora’s falcon (Falco eleonorae).
The island’s migratory visitors include the hoopoe (Upupa epops), the butcherbird (Lanius), the black-eared wheatear (Oenanthe hispanica), the harrier (Circus), the black kite (Milvus migrans), the eagle (Aquila), the peregrine falcon (Falco pelegrinus), the Eurasian woodcock (Scolopax rusticola), the song thrush (Turdus philomelos), the common quail (Coturnix coturnix), the garganey (Anas querquedula), the European turtle dove (Streptopelia turtur), the barn swallow (Hirundo rustica) and the golden oriole (Oriolus oriolus).
Reptiles and Amphibians
Reptile species found in Kythera include Kotschy’s gecko (Cyrtopodion kotschyi), the Mediterranean gecko (Hemidactylus turcicus), the Peloponnese slow worm (Anguis Cephalonica), the Greek rock lizard (Lacerta graeca), several species of (non-poisonous) snakes, and turtles. Amphibians such as the Balkan stream frog (Rana graeca) live in small lakes and brooks.
The bee is one of the most important insects in Kythera. The small emperor moth (Saturnia pavonia), the largest European moth, can also be found in Kythera. Other invertebrates include grasshoppers, butterflies, flies, beetles, snails, scorpions and cockroaches.