Panayiotis Pafilis

Panayiotis Pafilis
National and Kapodistrian University of Athens | uoa · Division of Biology

Professor

About

140
Publications
50,547
Reads
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2,343
Citations
Introduction
Panayiotis Pafilis currently works at the Department of Biology, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens. Panayiotis does research in Zoology. Their current project is 'Trait evolution of Greek island reptiles.'
Additional affiliations
August 2007 - May 2010
University of Michigan
Position
  • Research Associate
September 2006 - July 2007
University of the Aegean
Position
  • Lecturer

Publications

Publications (140)
Article
Full-text available
Space is a limited resource in which many animals need to perform basic functions such as feeding and reproducing. Competition over access to space can induce a variety of behaviours that may result in differential access to crucial resources related to survival and fitness. The Aegean wall lizard, Podarcis erhardii, is a colour-polymorphic lizard...
Article
Full-text available
Animals exhibit considerable and consistent among-individual variation in cognitive abilities, even within a population. Recent studies have attempted to address this variation using insights from the field of animal personality. Generally, it is predicted that animals with “faster” personalities (bolder, explorative, and neophilic) should exhibit...
Article
Recently, biologists have become increasingly interested in cognitive variation among individuals and how it relates to differences in fitness. However, very few studies so far have studied the long-term repeatability and heritability of cognitive performance in wild animals. This is nevertheless crucial information to fully understand the potentia...
Article
Full-text available
Gut passage time (GPT), a key factor in digestive procedure, is of pivotal importance for digestion. Sev- eral parameters may affect GPT, such as temperature, length of gastrointestinal tract and body size. Here, we exam- ine the influence of prey weight and prey species on GPT in the endemic diurnal gecko Quedenfeldtia moerens, from the Anti-Atlas...
Article
Situated at the junction of three continents, Europe, Asia and Africa, the Eastern Mediterranean is an ideal region to study the effects of palaeogeography, ecology and long human presence on animal evolution. Laudakia stellio (Squamata: Agamidae) is found across this region and offers an excellent opportunity for such studies. The high morphologic...
Article
Lethocerinae water bugs are vertebrate predators that include in their diet large prey such as fish, turtles, snakes and frogs. Although frog consumption is common among the members of the genus Lethocerus, similar reports are unknown from Europe. Here we report a predation event by an adult Lethocerus patruelis (Stål, 1854) on a subadult Balkan wa...
Article
The Mediterranean Basin has experienced extensive change in geology and climate over the past six million years. Yet, the relative importance of key geological events for the distribution and genetic structure of the Mediterranean fauna remains poorly understood. Here, we use population genomic and phylogenomic analyses to establish the evolutionar...
Article
Understanding the genomic basis of adaptation to different abiotic environments is important in the context of climate change and resulting short‐term environmental fluctuations. Using functional and comparative genomics approaches, we here investigated whether signatures of genomic adaptation to a set of environmental parameters are concentrated i...
Article
Full-text available
Though biological invasions constitute one of the biggest threats for global biodiversity, our understanding of the mechanisms that enable invasive species to outperform native species is still limited, especially, in terms of behavior. Most available studies have examined behavioral traits which favor invasive species on the later stages of invasi...
Article
Body size evolution on islands is widely studied and hotly debated. Gigantism and dwarfism are thought to evolve under strong natural selection, especially on small remote islands. We report a curious co-occurrence of both dwarf and giant lizards on the same small, remote island (Plakida): the largest Podarcis erhardii (Lacertidae) and smallest Med...
Preprint
Full-text available
The Mediterranean Basin has experienced extensive change in geology and climate over the past six million years. Yet, the relative importance of key geological events for the distribution and genetic structure of the Mediterranean fauna remains poorly understood. Here, we use population genomic and phylogenomic analyses to establish the evolutionar...
Article
Populations of the same species occupying different microhabitats can either exhibit generalized traits across them or display intraspecific variability, adapting to each microhabitat in order to maximize performance. Intraspecific variability contributes to the generation of diversity, following selection and adaptation, and understanding such var...
Article
Our knowledge of the conservation status of reptiles, the most diverse class of terrestrial vertebrates, has improved dramatically over the past decade, but still lags behind that of the other tetrapod groups. Here, we conduct the first comprehensive evaluation (~92% of the world's ~1714 described species) of the conservation 1 Joint senior authors...
Article
Harsh and variable environments have been hypothesized to both drive and constrain the evolution towards higher cognitive abilities and behavioural flexibility. In this study, we compared the cognitive abilities of island and mainland Aegean wall lizards ( Podarcis erhardii ), which were expected to live in respectively a more variable and a more s...
Article
Full-text available
The Lichadonisia island group is located between Maliakos and the North Evian Gulf, in central Greece. Lichadonisia is one of the few volcanic island groups of Greece, consisting mainly of lava flows. Today the islands are uninhabited with high numbers of visitors, but permanent population existed for many decades in the past. Herein, we present fo...
Article
Full-text available
Tissue regeneration is a fundamental evolutionary adaptation, which is well known in lizards that can regenerate their entire tail. However, numerous parameters of this process remain poorly understood. Lizard tail serves many functions. Thus, tail autotomy comes with many disadvantages and the need for quick regeneration is imperative. To provide...
Article
Full-text available
Terrestrial reptiles are threatened by numerous anthropogenic activities, including agriculture. Many agricultural methods and techniques affect the herpetofauna located in the oldest known tree crops in the Mediterranean Basin, olive trees. For the first time, we present a case of unintentional capture (and killing) of 12 snake-eyed skinks Ablepha...
Article
Full-text available
Although the insular distribution of the rich herpetofauna of Greece has been studied more extensively, the mainland one is still underexplored. The region of Attica in central Greece represents one of these “black spots” in the mainland. Thus, in 2019 we surveyed for the first time the herpetofauna of Attica in a systematic way. We collected 794 f...
Book
A bilingual guide to the nature and biodiversity of the Small Cycladic Islands for visitors and hikers (in Greek and English).
Article
Full-text available
Color polymorphism defies evolutionary expectations as striking phenotypic variation is maintained within a single species. Color and other traits mediate social interactions, and stable polymorphism within a population is hypothesized to be related to correlational selection of other phenotypic traits among color morphs. Here, we report on a previ...
Article
Full-text available
Infectious diseases are major drivers of biodiversity loss. The risk of fungal diseases to the survival of threatened animals in nature is determined by a complex interplay between host, pathogen and environment. We here predict the risk of invasion of populations of threatened Mediterranean salamanders of the genus Lyciasalamandra by the pathogeni...
Article
In this note we report for the first time the occurrence of the Roughtail Rock Agama (Stellagama stellio) from Kaprathos Island, Greece. Greece represents the westernmost range limit of the animal and hosts its only European populations. Although Karpathos is a relatively well-studied island in terms of its herpetofauna, this is the second remarkab...
Article
Full-text available
Centipedes feed mainly on insects and other invertebrates. However, they may occasionally enhance their diet with small vertebrates. Lizard consumption by centipedes is rather rare. Here, we report an incident of saurophagy by the most common Mediterranean scolopendrid, Scolopendra cingulata, on the Aegean wall lizard, Podarcis erhardii. Island par...
Article
A small but growing population of the Dalmatian Algyroides (Algyroides nigropunctatus) was found in a suburb of Athens (Greece), a long way from the species’ known range. This apparently introduced population increases the number of new lizard species documented in the Athens metropolitan area during the past few years.
Article
Full-text available
Lacertid lizards are a widely radiated group of squamate reptiles with long-term stable ZZ/ZW sex chromosomes. Despite their family-wide homology of Z-specific gene content, previous cytogenetic studies revealed significant variability in the size, morphology, and heterochromatin distribution of their W chromosome. However, there is little evidence...
Article
Studies of animal communication have documented myriad rapid, context-dependent changes in visual and acoustic signal design. In contrast, relatively little is known about the capacity of vertebrate chemical signals to rapidly respond, either plastically or deterministically, to changes in context. Four years following an experimental introduction...
Article
Insular animals are thought to be under weak predation pressure and increased intraspecific competition compared with those on the mainland. Thus, insular populations are predicted to evolve 'slow' life histories characterized by fewer and smaller clutches of larger eggs, a pattern called the 'island syndrome'. To test this pattern, we collected da...
Book
Full-text available
Σύνδεσμος για PDF: http://herpatlas.gr/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/Atlas_Amphibians_and_Reptiles_of_Greece.pdf
Book
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The Karpathos frog (Pelophylax cerigensis) is one of the most narrow-endemic species of European amphibians, with a very restricted distribution in th eisland of Karpathos, Greece. Currently, only two populations are recorded from small streams in the northern part of the island and a few individuals have been located in a reservoir. It appears tha...
Article
Full-text available
Abstract Herein we present the recently founded Hellenic Evolutionary Society (HEVOS) that has been recently instituted to promote evolution and scientific thinking among the Greek-speaking public. HEVOS is a timely initiative, given the low levels of acceptance of evolution by Greek society and the almost complete lack of evolution teaching in pri...
Article
Full-text available
Context Islands harbor unique and sensitive wildlife. Little is currently known, however, on how touristic development affects island species. We analyzed how tourism-associated infrastructure impacts wildlife and habitat availability across a representative Mediterranean island landscape (Naxos, Aegean Sea, Greece). Objectives First, we aimed to...
Article
Full-text available
Isolation is a key factor in island biology. It is usually defined as the distance to the geographically nearest mainland, but many other definitions exist. We explored how testing different isolation indices affects the inference of impacts of isolation on faunal characteristics. We focused on land bridge islands and compared the relationships of...
Article
Full-text available
Climatic conditions changing over time and space shape the evolution of organisms at multiple levels, including temperate lizards in the family Lacertidae. Here we reconstruct a dated phylogenetic tree of 262 lacertid species based on a supermatrix relying on novel phylogenomic datasets and fossil calibrations. Diversification of lacertids was acco...
Poster
Full-text available
Though invasive species constitute one of the biggest threats for global biodiversity, little is known on the putative advantages that make invasive species to outperform the equivalent native species in terms of behavior. The Italian wall lizard (Podarcis siculus) has been widely introduced and established viable populations in many countries incl...
Preprint
Full-text available
Understanding the genomic basis of adaptation to different abiotic environments is important for understanding organismal responses to current short-term environmental fluctuations. Using functional and comparative genomics approaches, we here investigated whether genomic adaptation to a set of environmental parameters is contingent across vertebra...
Article
Full-text available
Invasive species have been recognised as an important hazard to native communities. Amongst the mitigation measures that have been proposed to confront biological invasions, eradication projects are certainly the most drastic. In this short communication, a successful eradication project against a recently established population of the Italian wall...
Article
Full-text available
Environmental factors may affect animal performance in diverse ways, even among different populations of a single species. Here, we assess the impact of substrate type on the sprint performance (maximum speed and acceleration) of Schreiber's fringe-fingered lizard (Acanthodactylus schreiberi). This species is a skillful runner that also bears micro...
Article
Both environmental temperatures and spatial heterogeneity can profoundly affect the biology of ectotherms. In lizards, thermoregulation may show high plasticity and may respond to environmental shifts. In the context of global climate change, lizards showing plastic thermoregulatory responses may be favored. In this study, we designed an experiment...
Article
Full-text available
Studies on life history characters are of pivotal importance to understand population dynamics and demography and, if required, to propose effective conservation measures. The Balkan green lizard (Lacerta trilineata) is the most widespread lizard species in the Balkans but, interestingly, there are no studies on its reproductive biology. Herein, we...
Article
Full-text available
The Karpathos marsh frog (Pelophylax cerigensis) is considered the most endangered frog in Europe. Here we assess its feeding ecology and examine 76 individuals from the two known populations using the stomach flushing method. We also measured body weight, snout–vent length, mouth width and prey width and length. Pelophylax cerigensis follows the f...
Article
The major histocompatibility complex (MHC) has long served as a model for the evolution of adaptive genetic diversity in wild populations. Pathogen-mediated selection is thought to be a main driver of MHC diversity, but it remains elusive to what degree selection shapes MHC diversity in complex biogeographical scenarios where other evolutionary pro...
Article
Full-text available
Various factors may alter anti-predatory responses among conspecifics. Here we assess some of these factors using three populations of a Mediterranean lizard (Acanthodactylus schreiberi) in Cyprus that differ in their habitat type, predator diversity and population density. We expected that predation would affect flight initiation distance (FID; th...
Article
Full-text available
The genus Pelophylax, which currently comprises 26 species, is a well studied group due to its complex history and high diversification, although some phylogenies remain unresolved. Here we assess the phylogenetic position and the population genetic structure of the Critically Endangered Karpathos frog, Pelophylax cerigensis, endemic to Karpathos I...
Chapter
Full-text available
Aegean Islands host a rich herpetofauna comprising a plethora of endemic taxa. Since the early 19th century, this unique diversity attracted numerous herpetologists that described the Greek species and provided records of their distribution. Interestingly, many new records on insular ranges are still added to the literature every year. During the l...
Article
Full-text available
In this document we present the discovery of a new established population of the Moorish Gecko (Tarentola mauritanica) in Athens at the regions of Sepolia and Aigaleo. This is the first time the species is reported in mainland Greece, outside its known distribution in the W Peloponnese. As a strongly synanthropic species, the Moorish Gecko must hav...
Article
Full-text available
Effective thermoregulation is of vital importance since body temperature affects virtually all physiological and biochemical processes. Yet, our current knowledge in reptilian thermoregulation is largely based on a few, well-studied taxonomic groups. This is especially true in Europe, where our insights derive primarily from studies on the numerous...
Article
Full-text available
In this study we aimed to clarify the identity of a wall lizard population that deviates phenotypically from the other Podarcis lizards that occur in the broader area (Athens, Greece). To this end we used molecular techniques. Most surprisingly, we identified the focal population as Podarcis vaucheri, a species far away from its natural range. Mole...
Article
Full-text available
Information is provided on the feeding ecology and reproduction of the european Green lizard, Lacerta viridis (Laurenti, 1768), from the very south of its distribution range. The authors analyzed the stomach contents of 86 preserved specimens originating from the Greek mainland stored at the Herpetological collection of the natural History Museum o...
Article
Full-text available
1. The signals that animals use to communicate often differ considerably among species. Part of this variation in signal design may derive from differential natural selection on signal efficacy; the ability of the signal to travel efficiently through the environment and attract the receiver's attention. For the visual and acoustic modalities, the e...
Article
Full-text available
Animal body sizes are often remarkably variable across islands, but despite much research we still have a poor understanding of both the patterns and the drivers of body size evolution. Theory predicts that interspecific competition and predation pressures are relaxed on small, remote islands, and that these conditions promote body size evolution....
Article
Species occurring in sympatry have to effectively segregate their niche in order to co-exist. In the case of ectotherms in particular, the very important parameter of thermal biology has to be taken into account. Here we investigated the thermoregulatory effectiveness (E) of two endemic Greek lizards (Hellenolacerta graeca and Podarcis peloponnesia...
Article
Full-text available
Caudal autotomy is one of the most effective and widespread defensive mechanisms among lizards. When predators grasp the tail, lizards are able to shed it from the point of the attack and further. Numerous factors have been reported to affect tail-shedding performance such as temperature, age, predation pressure, intraspecific competition etc. Inte...
Article
In caudal autotomy, lizards shed their tail to escape from an attacking predator. Since the tail serves multiple functions, caudal regeneration is of pivotal importance. However, it is a demanding procedure that requires substantial energy and nutrients. Therefore, lizards have to increase energy income to fuel the extraordinary requirements of the...