Surface fauna in Slovak karst

The fauna of the Slovak Karst is characteristic of steppe or forest-steppe habitat with montane elements preserved in the damp and cool valleys. Karst forms of beetles and insects are abundantly represented and mention should be made of the occurrence of the endemic beetles Duvalius bokori and Otiorhynchus roubali from the Zadielska tiesnava Gorge (on picture 50kB). The snail Sadleriana pannonica lives only in the Slovak karst area and Alophia clathrata or Zebrina detrita deserves mention too.

Among reptiles, lizards are the most numerous with Lacerta viridis, Lacerta vivipara and Podarcis muralis all present.

The rocky steppes and forest steppes are the haunt of rock bunting Emberiza cia, the most northern locality in Europe. In addition, rock thrush Monticola saxatilis, peregrine falcon Falco peregrinus, saker F. cherrug, short-toed eagle Circaetus gallicus, lesser spotted eagle Aquila pomarina and others are present. Innumerable colonies of bats haunt the caves. The area marks the westernmost distribution for striped field mouse Apodemus agrarius whilst Miller`s water shrew Neomys anomalus is found here in large numbers. Also present are red deer Cervus elaphus, roe deer Capreolus capreolus and introduced species such as Ovis sp., and wild boar Sus scrofa.

SLOVAKIA CAVE SERVER prepared by Eduard Kladiva (Old Cave Dog) from Speleoclub CASSOVIA . Please send all comments, notes and corrections on e-mail