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Elicriso euph p.jpg

EUNIS 5320: Low Formations of Euphorbia Close to Cliffs


Habitat Profile Contents:

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HP:CEG Description



Specific to the Thermo-Mediterranean, Pluvi-seasonal Oceanic Bioclimate. Sub-halophyte vegetation in  communities with low formations of Helichrysum-Jacobaea-Euphorbia-Camphrosoma-Daucus (see primary plant species), as a dominance of sub-shrubs & herbaceous species adapted to high wind exposure. Forming a transitional band between rocky areas more directly exposed to the action of the sea colonised by communities of Crithmum-Limonium  and the formation of Thermo-Mediterranean Macchia on vegetated cliffs. Geographical distribution of this habitat is predominantly Tyrrhenian with exact plant community composition characterised by different species belonging to the Western Mediterranean.  

    The significant difference in habitat composition within the Valle Della Luna are stands of the endangered Jacobaea maritima ssp. Gibbosa (Red List Italy; EN) & Allium commutatum (Red List Mediterranean; LC), formed together with endemic Helichrysum italicum ssp. Tyrrhenicum, Limonium merxmuelleri ssp. Sulcitanum & Silene rosulata ssp. Sanctae-therasiae. An important observed ecosystem association between the endemic Graphosoma  italicum ssp. Sardiniensis (Sardinian Striped Shieldbug) and Daucus carota (Sea Carrot), where mating occurs, is present in SA1: Valle 3b. Also of high significance is a rare observed endemic population of Archeolacerta bedriagae (Bedriaga's Rock Lizard), at the top of Valle 3b.


SA1 (Study Area 1): Valle 3b - set back from the sea about 20-25m, up from the beach at the base of the valle extending up both sides of the canyon & to the 3rd/7th valli apex, where it merges with Vegetated Sea-cliffs, the occasional small pocket of Holm-oak Woodland & Arborescent Juniperus Macchia. An underground/rock water track runs through Valle 3b to the sea, bordered by Junco grasses. 

SA2 (Study Area 2): Valle 4 & 5 (mosaic with grassland) - adjoining Brachypodietalia Coastal Grassland & Arborescent Macchia with Juiniperus in a mosaic habitat, meeting Vegetated Sea-cliffs & Thermo-Mediterranean Macchia. See update 2019/20 for SA3.

Elicriso Gariga 4-5th Valli.png

SA2Valli 4th/5th (mosaic)

Valle 3b (Krull).png

SA1: Valle 3b (mosaic)


SA1: Exposed, North-West facing, directly against the strong prevailing wind (Mistral). Partial Shade. SA2: Exposed. Full Sun.



SA1: Granite rocks with with pockets of soil in places. Sandy-loam; low in organic matter with high sand content. pH 7.2, particle-size 0.001-45mm approx. Low availability of nutrients. SA2: Fixed Dune Grassland. Sandy-loam; medium organic matter content. pH 7.2, particle size 0.001-20mm appox. Relatively low availability of nutrients.


                                                FLORAE (Botanical)


Xerophytic, Sub-halophytic, Halophytic, Chasmophytic, Lithophytic, Phreatophytic, Heliophytic, Geophytic.


Primarily Subshrub-Herbaceous spread.


Camphorosma monspeliaca (Camphorfume), Crithmum maritimum (Sea Fennel), Daucus carota (Sea Carrot), Euphorbia pitythusa (Hedgehog Spurge), Helichrysum italicum ssp. Tyrhennicum (Elicriso), Jocobaea maritima ssp. Gibbosa (Silver Ragwort), Lotus creticus (Ginestrino). 


Allium commutatum (Sea Garlic) Anthemis maritima (Sea Chamomile), Juncus acutus ssp. acutus (Junco), Juniperus phoenicea (Ginepro), Limonium merxmuelleri ssp. Sulcitanum (Sea-Lavender), Lobularia maritima (Sweet Alyssum), Pistachia lentiscus (Lentisco), Brachypodietalia Grasses. 


Beta vulgaris ssp. maritima (Bietola Selvatico), Erodium corsicum (Erba de Agullas), Parietaria judaica (Pigulosa), Silene rosulata ssp. Sanctae-therasiae (Silene di Santa Teresa), Smilax aspera (Sarsaparilla), Solanum lycopersicum (Wild Tomato).


Erodium corsicum (Erba de Agullas), Helichrysum italicum ssp. Tyrhennicum (Elicriso), Limonium merxmeulleri ssp. Sulcitanum (Sea-Lavender), Silene rosulata ssp. Sancta,e-therasiae (Silene di Santa Teresa).


Allium commutatum (Red List Mediterranean; LC), Jacobaea maritima ssp. Gibbosa (Red List Italy; EN).


None recorded. Although the habitat is open to rapid spread of Caprobrotus spp. & other Aizoocies/Mesambryanthemacies as a threat.

                                                         FAUNAE (Noted Creatures)


Hemiptera-Heteroptera; Graphosoma italicum ssp. Sadiniensis (Sardinian Striped Shieldbug), Pyrrhocoris apterus (Carabiniera Bug). Coleoptera; Chlorophytus sartor (Round-necked Longhorn Beetle). Hymenoptera; Apis mellifera (European Honey Bee), Bombus lucorum (White-tailed Bumble Bee), Bombus terrestris (Buff-tailed Bumble Bee), Solitary Bee Unknown, Wasp Unknown, Ants Unknown. Diptera: multiple Unknown Flies & Hoverflies (Diptera). Lepidoptera; Macroglossum stellatarum (Hummingbird Hawk Moth), Coenonympha corinna (Corsican Heath), Goneptyrx cleopatra (Cleopatra), Odonata: Unknown Dragonflies (Odonata). Araneae: Unknown small red/black Spider possibly Entelegynae, Unknown large brown/orange spider.


Podarcis tiliguerta ssp. tiliguerta (Tyrrhenian Lizard). Archeolacerta bedriagae (Bedriaga's Rock Lizard). Podarcis sicula f.melanica



Rattus norvegicus (Norweigan Brown Rat).


Corvus corax (Imperial Crow), Columba palumbus (Wood Pigeon) or Columba Livia (Wild Pigeon). Terdus merula (Blackbird/Merlo). Many small & sea Birds are present, seasonally.


Graphosoma italicum ssp. Sadiniensis, Podarcis tiliguerta ssp. tiliguerta. Others still to be studied.



                                                                   ECOSYSTEM ELEMENTS

Biotic & Abiotic interactions between species and physical elements shall be drawn together, after observations to create a picture of how this specific Ecosystem functions. This will be supported by Soundscape recordings to depict change in Biodiversity levels over time.

Focal research on populations will take place where possible for species of special importance or significance where possible.



The following observed interactions between species will be utilised for construction of a localised Ecosystem Food-Web Diagram. Icons are used in each Association Identification Item to depict:

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Very Reliable Observation; Complete Identifications.

Very Reliable Observation: Incomplete Identifications. 

Reliable Observation; Complete Identifications.

Reliable Observation; Incomplete Identifications.

Unreliable Observation: Complete Identifications.

Unreliable Observation: Incomplete Identifications.

Ecosystem Importance Ranking:

High Value

Medium Value

Low Value or Un-Evaluated

5320-1a; Sardinian Striped Shieldbug & Sea Carrot Habitat Association.

Organism 1:

Graphosoma italicum ssp. Sardiniensis  (Sardinian Striped Shieldbug) - Pentatomidae; Hemiptera; Heteroptera.

Endemic NW Sardinia / Not Evaluated.   

Organism 2:           

Daucus carota; most likely; ssp. Hispanicus (Sea Carrot) - Apiaceae.

Widespread in Mediterranean Coastlines / Not Protected.


The Sea Carrot acts as the primary food plant from which Graphosma sucks plant juices.

Specimens can be found in groups or pairs mating on flower/seed heads during Summer months.


June-July 2018.                High Ecosystem Importance Value: Host plant as multiple-use habitat resource.

5320-2a; Sea Garlic as a Nectar/Pollen Resource.

Organism 1:

Allium commutatum  (Sea Garlic) - Alliaceae.

Stable Population throughout Mediteranean / Red List Mediterranean - LC.   

Organism 2:           

Apis mellifera (European Honey Bee) - Apidae.

Widespread / Not Protected.

Organism 3:

Bombus terrestris ssp. Sassaricus (Buff-tailed Bumble Bee) - Apidae.

Endemic Sardinian Sub-species / Red List European - LC.

Organisms 4-9:

Unknown Hoverflies/Flies - Diptera.

*Note: multiple sightings, sipping nectar. Large diversity of Hoverflies.

Organism 10:

Unknown Spider - Araneae

*Behavioural note: On flower, preying on visiting insects.



INTERACTIONS: Primarily as a Nectar resource in Aestival (June/July).


June-July 2018.                High Ecosystem Importance Value: Host plant as multiple-use habitat resource.

Update 2019/20 - addition to study area parameters:

Newly defined area of Mosaic Elicriso Garriga with endemic Brachyodetalia Dune Grassland with Annuals, representing approx. 30% coverage of Cala di Mezzu (2nd Valle). Merging into Arborecent Macchia with Juniperus phoenicea & Thermo-Mediterranean Tree Spuge Gariga.  A large variety of pollinating insects observed during 04/2019-10/2019 study period, including numerous Solitary Bees, Hoverflies, Butterflies/Moths & also brightly-coloured Dragonflies & interesting Spiders. Together with ongoing observations, especailly in Valle 3B (Mosaic), of the symbiosis between the endemic Sardinian Striped-Shieldbug (Graphosma Italicum ssp. Sardinienis) & the Sea Carrot (Daucus carota) The European Free-tailed Bat (Tadarida teniotis) has been recorded as the primary Bat species in site SA1 & SA3  with a Bat Detector (Magenta). The most common land-based Mammal is the Norwegian brown Rat (Ratus norveigicus). The most common reptile is the Tyrrenhian Wall Lizard (Podarcis tiliguerta). Common Birds are Blackbirds, Crows and Seagulls.

Of Note * Various sightings of the rare Bedriaga's Rock Lizard in SA1, primarily in the higher elevation merging of Valle 3B & the 7h Valle, an area very interesting, a merging of Elicriso Gariga with Arborest Macchia, Calacarea Macchia. 

2nd Valle (Mosaic).png

Above; the newly defined Study area for Coastal Elicriso Gariga in mosaic with Brachypodetalia Grassland with Annuals, Arborescent Macchia with  Juniperus & Vegetated Sea with Limonium. SA3: Valle 2., primarily Camphoprasma - Euphorbia - Daucus -Anthemis - Lotus - Crithmum -Limonium - Dactylus - Pistacia - Juniperus.


HP:CEG Florae
Ecological Elements
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