Galapagos Islands Lizards & Iguanas

Galapagos Islands Lizards & Iguanas. Two popular locations in the Galapagos Islands to see marine iguanas that are endemic to the islands and found nowhere else on earth are La Loberia Nature Reserve on San Cristobal Island and Tortuga Bay on Santa Cruz Island.

The area where the beach meets sand dunes are nesting grounds and you will see signs posted to not disturb, especially during March through May which is the breeding season.

The marine iguanas (scientific name is Amblyrhynchus cristatus) feed on underwater algae and seaweed.

Galapagos Land Iguanas (Conolophus subcristatus) are less easily spotted unless you venture to the Charles Darwin Research Center and check out the Restoration Program.

Galapagos Islands Lizards & Iguanas.  Iguanas Catching Some Sun on Isabela Island
Iguanas Catching Some Sun on Isabela Island

They used to be abundant on Santiago Island and elsewhere but the population was decimated by the introduction of non-native pigs, dogs, rats and cats. Common Land Iguanas are listed as ‘vulnerable’ on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.

Galapagos Islands Lizards & Iguanas.  Marine Iguana Crossing the Path at La Loberia Nature Reserve on San Cristobal Island
Marine Iguana Crossing the Path at La Loberia Nature Reserve on San Cristobal Island

There are seven species of Lava Lizard (Tropidurus) in the Galapagos, with ones with a crest (like a mohawk) found only on San Cristobal. The grey Lava Lizard pictured below is a male, the reddish one a girl; females have a red belly and neck.

Female Lava Lizard Spotted at Crab Beach on Floreana Island
Female Lava Lizard Spotted at Crab Beach on Floreana Island
Galapagos Islands Lizards & Iguanas.  Male Lava Lizard Near Visitor's Center on San Cristobal Island
Male Lava Lizard Near Visitor’s Center on San Cristobal Island

More Galapagos Islands Articles:
Las Grietas Lagoon on Santa Cruz Island, Galapagos
Galapagos Islands Sea Lions
Playa de la Estacion on Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz Island
Center for Land Tortoises at Charles Darwin Research Center on Puerto Ayora
Hiking on San Cristobal Island, Galapagos
Las Grietas Lagoon on Santa Cruz Island

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