Lesvos Island  UNESCO Global Geopark with rare and unique flora and fauna

The Lesvos Island UNESCO Global Geopark, one of the finest and rarest monuments of geological heritage worldwide and 2nd largest in all the world, is a founding member of the Geoparks Network that brings visitors to an ancient forest preserved by a massive volcanic eruption 20 million years ago. Known also as the Petrified Forest of Sigri, the Lesvos Island UNESCO Global Geopark features rare and impressive fossilized treetrunks, formed some 15 to 20 million years ago, due to intense volcanic activity that covered the trees by lava, ashes and other materials spewed into the atmosphere. Moreover, in the area of Lesvos Island UNESCO Global Geopark there are findings of the oldest known land mammal (Prodeinotherium bavaricum) 19 million years ago in Greece, impressive fossils of animals that lived on Lesvos 2 million years ago, numerous volcanic sites and thermal springs, faults and landscapes created from tectonism, caves and karstic structures, erosional forms and waterfalls as well as impressive coastal landforms all created by the intense volcanic activity some 21.5-16.2 million years ago.
“The WWF Greece conducted a full recording of the greek wetlands on the islands of the Aegean Sea (Crete excluded) in 2007. The island of Lesvos came in first place with 63 wetlands! Most of them are found around the perimetre of the Kalloni and the Gera Gulf.”
Did you know that Lesvos has more than 500 different species of bees on the island, rare pine trees, Rhododendron and orchids, ancient olive trees that are more than 1000 years old? Did you know that Lesvos is also breeding and nesting grounds for many protected bird species, like the yellow-beaked seagull on the little islet of St. George near the traditional village of Petra, and is also home to various mammals, such as the Persian Squirrel (Sciurus anomalus), only found on Lesvos in all of Europe, as well as the Globally Threatened species of the Mediterranean Monk Seal (Monachus monachus), which breeds in coastal caves around the island?
Lesvos can be characterized as a “botanical paradise” with rare plants and trees such as the Rhododendron and wild orchids.

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