Animals of Macedonia

In one day, while hiking from Prilep to Treskavec Monastery (and back), I saw the range of animals living in Macedonia, some of them expected, others unexpectedly exotic.

Horses are no surprise in a landscape that could be used for shooting Western movies.


Resting and seeking shade under a tree, I heard something move in the foliage. It was a sound like from a large animal, one that shouldn’t be living on trees. Like a crocodile. It was not easy to spot because it had exactly the same color as the leaves, but luckily it remained still once it noticed my curiosity: a green lizard.

crocodile in tree

It was quite big. I didn’t see the whole tail, but the main body was at least 10 cm long. And fat. Of course there were also hundreds of common lizards along the path, but I didn’t take any photos, maybe because I am so used to them by now, after living around the Mediterranean for a while.

The other animals of which I sadly didn’t capture any photos were butterflies. They were too fast, I was too slow. At times, five or six of them were circling around my head. Bright yellow ones, green ones, blue ones, butterflies with stripes, butterflies with see-through wings and butterflies in black, many of them bigger than the butterflies I had seen thus far.

“Whoa!” I screamed out in surprise, when I almost stepped on this animal by accident.


At an altitude of around 1,000 meters and in a very dry landscape, I really wouldn’t have expected to see a turtle. I used to think they prefer lakes or rivers.

And then the most surprising find. What’s the last animal you would expect in the hills of Macedonia? I don’t know if it regularly lives here or if it had escaped from a zoo, but there was an elephant, looking down on the town of Prilep indecisively.

elephant(Zur deutschen Fassung dieser Biologiestunde.)

About Andreas Moser

Travelling the world and writing about it. I have degrees in law and philosophy, but I'd much rather be a writer, a spy or a hobo.
This entry was posted in Macedonia, Photography, Travel and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Animals of Macedonia

  1. Nice. The green lizard posed for portrait as did the elephant. :) Though I could be totally mistaken, I am guessing that the turtle may be actually some kind of tortoise (a more land oriented variety of ‘turtle’.

    • I think you could be totally right, exposing my complete lack of knowledge. I always thought that “toirtoise” is simply the French word for “turtle”, but I just had to discover that that would be “tortue”.

      I should just post photos, without any misleading or erroneous text, which would also save me a lot of time. :-)

    • But it is more enjoyable with the text, I must say.

    • I also enjoy writing more than taking photographs. It’s much more relaxing to walk around only with a notepad and a pen instead of a heavy camera. But even fewer people would read a blog with text only. I wish it was the 19th century.

  2. Pingback: Die Tierwelt Mazedoniens | Der reisende Reporter

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