Dangerously cute

There are some scary animals in the Algarve. Like the Lataste Viper, a poisonous snake which is about 50cm long, grey and has zigzag markings. Or the brown recluse spider, a biting nasty little creepy crawler. Better steer clear of those two. There is, however, no need to worry when you run into one of these three creatures. They’re dangerously cute!

See the original article in Enjoy the Algarve – magazine September 2016

 

Chameleon

With 360˚ vision, the ability to blend into its background and a ballistic tongue, the chameleon sounds like a dangerous hunter. Luckily it only eats insects. Find out more about this colour-changing reptile here.

Take care: when driving the roads, especially in September and October. Not because chameleons then leave the trees to try and attack you, but because they then leave the trees to lay their eggs and accidentally become roadkill in the process (they don’t pay attention to traffic lights or zebra crossings).

Picture below by Louis Dobson

 

Hammerhead shark

Shark? Yes, shark. Come on, thought you were the only one enjoying the warm waters of the Algarve?! Hammerhead sharks have been spotted along the coast a few times in the last decade. No need to worry, they normally only eat mackerels, sardines and tuna.

Take care: when you aren’t sure whether it’s a hammerhead shark or another shark, like a man-eating great white. The hammerhead is harmless, whereas the great white might mistake you for a seal, its favourite snack…

Picture below by Johnmartindavies

 

Gecko

Enjoy the Algarve’s symbol is useful (they eat mosquitos), cool (they can walk upside-down) and pretty impressive (nocturnal species have a colour vision which is 350 times more sensitive than human colour vision). If you’re not a mosquito, then these little lizards are completely harmless.

Take care: when closing doors and windows around sunset. Not because the gecko will be hiding behind them waiting for the ultimate opportunity to jump on you, but because it might be hiding behind them and accidentally get squashed.

Picture below by Luis Nunes Alberto

 

See the original article in Enjoy the Algarve – magazine September 2016

Posted in Features.