Environment

Rare steppe-runner lizard lives in challenging terrain of eastern Turkey

Reptile photographed by Anadolu Agency on Mt. Agri in Eastern Anatolia

Huseyin Yildiz   | 24.10.2021
Rare steppe-runner lizard lives in challenging terrain of eastern Turkey

IGDIR, Turkey

Rare steppe-runner lizard lives in the challenging terrain of Eastern Anatolia in Turkey.

This species is especially found in the Tuzluca district of Igdir province and on the slopes of Mt. Agri, in difficult terrains that are closed to agriculture and without much human mobility.

The steppe lizard, which lives globally only in the west of the Asian continent, in Turkey as well as in Azerbaijan, Armenia, Turkmenistan and Iran, was recently photographed in its natural environment by Anadolu Agency on the mountain.

“It has entered our country from two different points, one of them is Igdir. It is found from Igdir to Khorasan, and from Van to Bitlis,” Turkish herpetologist Bahadir Akman told Anadolu Agency.

Akman said these reptiles live in steppe environments (unforested grassland), and have enormous benefits for agriculture. "They are key to ecological balance as they feed on local insects and small invertebrates,” he said.

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