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Mexican Spiny-tailed Iguana I

Ctenosaura pectinata


I could not say I have been in the mayan ruins without a few decent shots of iguanas. They can be seen all over the place! Mexican iguanas have distinctive keeled scales on their long tails, which gives them their common name. They are one of the larger members of the genus Ctenosaura, capable of growing to 140 cm (4.6 feet) in length, with females being slightly smaller than males at 100 cm, and are typically brown or grey-brown in coloration with a yellowish ventral surface. They have a crest of long spines which extend down the center of their back. Hatchlings are often a bright green color with no pattern and darken as they age.


The Mexican Spiny-tailed iguana is a social lizard, which has adapted to living in groups. These iguanas are excellent climbers, and prefer a rocky habitat with plenty of crevices to hide in, rocks to bask on, and nearby trees to climb (Chichen Itza is then ideal for them!). They are diurnal and fast moving, employing their speed to escape predators but will lash with their tails and bite if cornered. They are often found dwelling near or in towns in their native Mexico and where they have been introduced elsewhere. They are primarily herbivorous, eating a variety of flowers, leaves, stems, and fruit, but they will opportunistically eat small animals, eggs, and arthropods.

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The MnMs
Spotted by
The MnMs

Yucatán, Mexico

Spotted on Sep 11, 2011
Submitted on Sep 21, 2011

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