Meeting Abstract

P1.27  Jan. 4  General diet of the exotic species Iguana iguana on North Puerto Rican mangrove GOMEZ-CARRASQUILLO, J. E.*; PEREZ-REYES, O.; HERNANDEZ-GARCIA, P.; THOMAS, R.; University of Puerto Rico; University of Puerto Rico; University of Puerto Rico; University of Puerto Rico

The population biology (diet, size distribution and fecundity) of the green iguana (Iguana iguana , Linnaeus) was studied on the International Airport Luis Muñoz Marín, Carolina, Puerto Rico. This iguana is endemic to Central America and is widely distributed over the West Indies, with high concentrations on the Greater Antilles and many tropical areas. The animals used in this study were collected by the U.S. Fish and Wild Life and donated to the Zoology Museum at the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus. The animals were measured from snout to vent; dissected and the eggs of the gravid females were counted. The stomachs were tied at the end of the esophagus and at the initial part of the intestine, removed and preserved in formaldehyde. The stomach content was separated, classified, and identified by specie, genus or family. After that the material was dried and weighed in order to establish the diet and the proportion of each food item. The length and the wide of each stomach was measured for establish the volume available for food; these measurements were used to compare stomach volume between male and females. The results showed that the diet of I. iguana at this site was exclusively composed of apical leaves of mangrove (Rhizophora mangle), parts of Leguminoseae, and small shrubs. Also a clear division in food preference was observed among females and males; these findings suggest a difference diet adaptation has results of their behavior or metabolic requirements among iguana sex.