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Barrington Land Iguana


The Barrington Land Iguana (Conolophus pallidus) is a species of lizard in the Iguanidae family. It is one of three species of Conolophus.

It is endemic to Santa Fe Island in the Galapagos.

Taxonomy

First described by American Zoologist Edmund Heller in 1903, it has been questioned whether C. pallidus is a valid species in its own right or merely a variant or possibly subspecies of the Galapagos Land Iguana found on other islands in the Galapagos.

Its generic name, Conolophus, is derived from two Greek words: conos (konos) meaning "spiny" and lophos (lofos) meaning "crest" or "plume", denoting the spiny crests along their backs. It's specific name pallidus is Latin for "pale", denoting its lighter coloration than C. subcristatus.

Morphology

The Barrington Land Iguana is similar in every detail to the Galapagos Land Iguana except that the Barrington Island Iguana is paler yellow in color with a longer more tapered snout and more pronounced dorsal spines.

The Barrington Land Iguana grows to a length of three feet with a body weight of up to twenty-five pounds. Being cold-blooded, they absorb heat from the sun basking on volcanic rock and at night sleep in burrows to conserve their body heat. These iguanas also enjoy a symbiotic relationship with the island's finches; the birds remove parasites and ticks providing relief to the iguana and food for the birds.

Diet

Barrington Land iguanas are primarily herbivorous, however some individuals have shown that they are opportunistic carnivores supplementing their diet with insects, centipedes and carrion.

Because fresh water is scarce on the islands it inhabits, the Land Iguana obtains the majority of its moisture from the prickly-pear cactus that makes up 80% of its diet: fruit, flowers, pads, and even spines. During the rainy season it will drink from available standing pools of water and feast on yellow flowers of the Genus Portulaca.

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Barrington Land Iguana


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