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Ctenosaura


Ctenosaura is a lizard genus commonly known as spinytail iguanas or Ctenosaurs. The genus is part of the large lizard family, Iguanidae and is native to Mexico and Central America.

Description[edit]

The species range in size (total length, including the tail) from about 12.5 centimetres (4.9 in) to well over 1 metre (39 in). The distinctive feature of this genus is the presence of enlarged, spiny scales on the tail.

Diet[edit]

Ctenosaurs are generally omnivorous, feeding on fruits, flowers, foliage, and small animals.

Captivity[edit]

Some members of this genus are popular as pets.

Invasive species[edit]

At least two species, Ctenosaura pectinata and Ctenosaura similis, have been introduced into the United States in southern Texas and Miami, Florida.

Speed[edit]

The world record sprint speed for lizards (21.5 miles/h or 34.6 km/h) was attained by the Costa Rican spiny-tailed iguana (Ctenosaura similis).[1][2]

Species[edit]

The genus Ctenosaura represents the most diverse group of iguanas with 15 currently recognized species and at least two unrecognized species.[3][4] These species inhabit lowland dry forests, below 1,200 metres (3,900 ft) elevation, on both coasts of Mexico and Central America.[3] All species of Ctenosaura fall within one of seven clades.[3] Distributions of these clades fall geographically within well established areas.[3] Closely related species show allopatry whereas species from divergent clades show sympatry.[3]

SpeciesCommon nameAuthorityGeographic range
Ctenosaura acanthuranortheastern spinytail iguana(Shaw, 1802)[5]Eastern Mexico
Ctenosaura alfredschmidtiCampeche spinytail iguanaKöhler, 1995Mexico and Guatemala
Ctenosaura bakeriBaker's spinytail iguanaStejneger, 1901Utila island off Honduras
Ctenosaura clarkiBalsas armed lizardBailey, 1928[6]Western Mexico
Ctenosaura conspicuosaSan Esteban iguanaGrismer, 1999San Estiban Island, Gulf of California
Ctenosaura defensorYucatán spinytail iguana(Cope, 1866)[7]Southern Mexico
Ctenosaura flavidorsalisyellowback spinytail iguanaKöhler & Klemmer, 1994Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala
Ctenosaura hemilophacape spinytail iguana(Cope, 1863)[8]Southern half of Baja California, Mexico
Ctenosaura macrolophaSonora black iguanaGrismer, 1999Sonora, Mexico
Ctenosaura melanosternablack-chested spinytail iguanaBuckley & Axtell, 1997Honduras
Ctenosaura nolascensisSan Pedro Nolasco iguanaGrismer, 1999San Pedro Nolasco Island, Gulf of California
Ctenosaura oaxacanaOaxacan spinytail iguanaKöhler & Hasbun, 2001Oaxaca, Mexico
Ctenosaura oedirhinaRoatán spinytail iguanade Queiroz, 1987Roatán, Honduras
Ctenosaura palearisGuatemalan spinytail iguanaStejneger, 1899Guatemala
Ctenosaura pectinataMexican spinytail iguana(Wiegmann, 1834)[9]Western Mexico. Introduced to the US in Texas and Florida.
Ctenosaura praeocularisHonduran club tail iguanaHasbún & Köhler, 2009SE Honduras
Ctenosaura quinquecarinataclub tail iguanaGray, 1842[10]Nicaragua and Costa Rica.
Ctenosaura similisblack spinytail iguanaGray, 1831[11]Mexico, Central America, and Colombia. Introduced to the US in Florida.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Garland, T., Jr. (1984), "Physiological correlates of locomotory performance in a lizard: an allometric approach", American Journal of Physiology 247 (5 Pt 2): R806–R815, PMID 6238543 
  2. ^ Malfatti, Mark (2007), "A Look at the Genus Ctenosaura: Meet the World's fastest lizard and its kin", Reptiles Magazine 15 (11): 64–73 
  3. ^ a b c d e Buckley, Larry; Pagel, Katelyn; Villela, Oscar (2007), "Evolution of Spiny-tailed Iguanas (Genus Ctenosaura): How Identification of Species Groups and their Relationships Can Help with Conservation Priorities", Iguana: Journal of the International Iguana Society 14 (4): 248–251 
  4. ^ "Ctenosaura". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 2 January 2008. 
  5. ^ "Ctenosaura acanthura". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 2 January 2008. 
  6. ^ "Ctenosaura clarki". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 2 January 2008. 
  7. ^ "Ctenosaura defensor". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 2 January 2008. 
  8. ^ "Ctenosaura hemilopha". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 2 January 2008. 
  9. ^ "Ctenosaura pectinata". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 2 January 2008. 
  10. ^ "Ctenosaura quinquecarinata". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 2 January 2008. 
  11. ^ "Ctenosaura similis". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 2 January 2008. 
  • Genus Ctenosaura at The Reptile Database
  • Frost, D.E. and R.E. Etheridge (1989) A Phylogenetic Analysis and Taxonomy of Iguanian Lizards (Reptilia: Squamata). Univ. Kansas Mus. Nat. Hist. Misc. Publ. 81
  • Frost, D.R., R. Etheridge, D. Janies and T.A. Titus (2001) Total evidence, sequence alignment, evolution of Polychrotid lizards, and a reclassification of the Iguania (Squamata: Iguania). American Museum Novitates 3343: 38 pp.
  • Garland, T., Jr. 1984. Physiological correlates of locomotory performance in a lizard: an allometric approach. Am. J. Physiol. 247 (Regulatory Integrative Comp. Physiol. 16):R806-R815. PDF
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