BLACK IGUANA
(Ctenosaura pectinata)
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Geographic range: Neotropical, Nearctic: C. pectinata is native of western Mexico, but has been introduced in extreme south Texas and southeastern Florida.

Physical characteristics: Large lizard reaching up to 48 inches. The color of its body is gray, brown, or yellow-brown with faint crossbars on body. Ventral surface is yellow or olive. Tail has bands of yellow and brown. Head is broad with tapering snout. Scales small and smooth. As many other species of Iguanidae it has a row of keeled scales down the length of back and tail. The keeled scales on tail form rings. Its tail is long - up to twice the length of the head and body. Toes are long and have sharp claws.

Food habits: It mostly feeds on vegetation, leaves, flowers, stems, and fruit, but will eat small animals.

Reproduction: Breeding occurs in early spring and egg clutches are laid in April and May. The female lays up to 50 eggs in burrows.

Behavior: This diurnal lizard is very wary and will hide under rocks or wood or climb a tree if approached. It employs head bobbing for territorial and breeding displays.

Habitat: This lizard occupies a sandy or rocky habitat with plenty of crevices to hide in. It has been seen on rock walls and in tree hollows, as well as on rock piles, wood piles and trash piles.

Biomes: tropical deciduous forest

Conservation: Populations are threatened by habitat destruction and ilegal trade.

 
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