Exotis ISSN 2398-2985

Reptiles

Desert iguana

Synonym(s): Dipsosaurus dorsalis

Contributor(s): Vetstream Ltd, Kirsty Dewhurst

Introduction

{% if (CurrentDocument.Parent.Parent == "Canis"){suffix = "Canis";} if (CurrentDocument.Parent.Parent == "Felis"){suffix = "Felis";} if (CurrentDocument.Parent.Parent == "Lapis"){suffix = "Lapis";} if (CurrentDocument.Parent.Parent == "Equis"){suffix = "Equis";} if (CurrentDocument.Parent.Parent == "Bovis"){suffix = "Bovis";} if (CurrentDocument.Parent.Parent == "Ferrets"){suffix = "Ferrets";} if (CurrentDocument.Parent.Parent == "Guinea Pigs"){suffix = "GuineaPigs";} if (CurrentDocument.Parent.Parent == "Reptiles"){suffix = "Reptiles";} return; |(user)lisam|(hash)224ba4a48c45977257c09c3ef73a20b651322eed555aeba5ac0fec44250fcef7%} {% LoginRegister = ("

This article is available in full to registered subscribers

Sign up now to purchase a 30 day trial, or Login

"); return; %}

Scientific Classification

  • Kingdom: Animalia. 
  • Phylum: Chordata. 
  • Class: Reptilia. 
  • Order: Squamata. 
  • Suborder: Iguania. 
  • Family: Iguanidae. 
  • Genus: Dipsosaurus
  • Species: dorsalis.

Distribution and habitat

  • North American deserts and southwestern United States. 
  • Also found in Mexico. 
  • Mainly found in desert environments - the bush, on dry, sandy scrubland and at low altitudes. 

Species status

  • Least concern. 
  • Estimated population exceeds 100,000 adults.
  • In certain areas its habitats are protected from human interference, including monuments, national parks and wilderness areas.

Life span

  • In captivity, 7 years or possibly longer. 
  • The longest recorded lifespan is 14 years. 
  • In the wild, <7 years. 

Diet

  • Herbivorous. 
  • Main foods include; fruits, leaves and buds Lizard nutrition
  • Their diet changes depending on what vegetation is readily available to them due to time of year and weather conditions.
  • They can recognize various plant materials by the chemicals in the plant make-up.

Breeding

  • Sexual maturity is reached at around 31-33 months old Lizard reproduction
  • Takes place in early spring and continues until midsummer. 
  • Each clutch of eggs will usually contain around 3-8 eggs. 
  • The eggs will usually hatch after 65-70 days; the higher the temperature the eggs are incubated at, the shorter the hatching times.

As pets

  • Can pet kept as a pet, however researching the species and providing the correct environment is essential: 
    • Require temperatures above 33-41°C/91.4-105.8°F. 
    • The basking area can be up to 45°C/113°F.
    • Burrows must be provided for them to escape heat, threats and bright light when needed.
    • Varied diet. 
    • Bright light. 

Biological Data

{% if (CurrentDocument.Parent.Parent == "Canis"){suffix = "Canis";} if (CurrentDocument.Parent.Parent == "Felis"){suffix = "Felis";} if (CurrentDocument.Parent.Parent == "Lapis"){suffix = "Lapis";} if (CurrentDocument.Parent.Parent == "Equis"){suffix = "Equis";} if (CurrentDocument.Parent.Parent == "Bovis"){suffix = "Bovis";} if (CurrentDocument.Parent.Parent == "Ferrets"){suffix = "Ferrets";} if (CurrentDocument.Parent.Parent == "Guinea Pigs"){suffix = "GuineaPigs";} if (CurrentDocument.Parent.Parent == "Reptiles"){suffix = "Reptiles";} return; |(user)lisam|(hash)224ba4a48c45977257c09c3ef73a20b651322eed555aeba5ac0fec44250fcef7%} {% LoginRegister = ("

This article is available in full to registered subscribers

Sign up now to purchase a 30 day trial, or Login

"); return; %}

Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

Other sources of information

  • Reptiles Magazine (2018) Care Sheet - Desert Iguana. Website: www.reptilesmagazine.com. Last accessed 14th February 2018. 
  • Sloan A (2012) Dipsosaurus dorsalis. Website: animaldiversity.org. Last accessed 14th February 2018.
  • Vitt L & Caldwell J (2009) Herpetology An Introductory Biology of Amphibians and Reptiles. 3rd edn. Elsevier, UK. pp 229 & 522.
  • Hammerson G A, Frost D R & Gadsden H (2007) Dipsosaurus dorsalis. In: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Website: www.iucnredlist.org. Last accessed 17th June 2018.
  • Encyclopedia of Life. Dipsosaurus dorsalis Northern Desert Iguana. Website: http://eol.org. Last accessed 17th June 2018.
  • Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Dipsosaurus dorsalis (Baird and Girard, 1852). Website: www.itis.gov. Last accessed 17th June 2018.

ADDED