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Some occasional pictures from our first stay on Skiathos and the satellite small islands in summer 1957. We had arrived on a fishing boat from Stylis on the mainland. There was no proper hotel on Skiathos yet, and for reaching the island's opposite (western) side we hired a mule with guide and stayed over night half way. No villas yet, no roads of any distance for cars; tourism was hardly thought of. ...weiterlesen "Skiathos half a century ago"

The abundance of wild flowers in spring 1976 was overwhelming. It may have been equally so in previous years... is it still the same, though, nowadays? ...weiterlesen "Skyros – a garden of wild flowers"

The inhabitants of Skyros still hold on to their proud heritage. Their island sustained countless generations cultivating the soil and breeding endemic lifestock according to ancient traditions (cf. the article: Skyros - pastoral traditions).

The inherited style of their houses was strictly observed. It relates to the Cycladic Archipelago, but became indigenous. Settlements reflect the close coherence in this rural society; nighbourhoods still determine the community. ...weiterlesen "Skyros communal architecture"

Land cultivation and pastoral traditions have ancient roots on Skyros.

The indigenous breed of cattle was still maintained in 1958. The photographs were taken in the coastal area adjoining Kalamítza Bay, east of Linarià.

The ponies were kept in one herd during the winter inland from Linarià (pictures taken in 1976).

The eastern part of Skyros, owned by the I.M. Megisti Lavra on Agion Oros, was leased for extensive goat browsing: The crippled oak "trees" (Quercus coccifera) cannot grow up to any hight, because again and again all young shoots and leaves are nibbled off (pictures taken in 1976). The subsequent erosion is progressing from higher altitudes downwards, moving the soil towards flat depressions or the sea respectively. So the carrying capacity of the land for pasture (mostly for browsing oak) is getting less year by year. A barren skeleton of rock with some marginal plant growth remains. And the annnual EU subsidies shoot up like rockets. We pay for this ecological mis-management - for another human distaster. ...weiterlesen "Skyros – pastoral traditions"

Comparative studies of lizard populations on small islands provide far reaching insigths into the evolution of genetic diversity as well as the history of the islands in focus (changes of sea level,land bridges). ...weiterlesen "Northern Sporades herpetofauna"