IUCN threat status:

Endangered (EN)

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Biology

The Guatemala spiny-tailed iguana is a semi-arboreal species that rests in hollow branches or rock crevices (1). Like all iguanas, this species is active during the day (6), and will only venture out from its shelter in the morning once temperatures have reached comfortable levels (2). As a cold-blooded animal, the Guatemalan spiny-tailed iguana will find a nearby sunny area where it will bask in the sun's warmth until the optimum body temperature is reached (2); it can them begin the task of feeding. The Guatemala spiny-tailed iguana is primarily a herbivore that feeds on plant material, but it may also occasionally capture small animal prey. Should it become threatened by the presence of a predator, the spiny-tailed iguana will rapidly flee to take refuge in a branch or rock crevice again (2). During the breeding season, male spiny-tailed iguanas pursue females. When a female is caught, the male pins the female down with its front legs and holds her neck in its mouth and proceeds to copulate. Eight to ten weeks after mating, the female lays eggs into a nest she has dug into the ground (2). Like other iguanas, spiny-tailed iguanas exhibit no parental care, and the female will leave the nest once she has laid her eggs (6). Around 90 days later, the eggs hatch and the newly hatched iguanas must dig their way out of the underground nest (2).

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Source: ARKive

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