WCS 3-Sentence Science

Parasites in Blue Iguanas

February 7, 2020

CREDIT: JULIE LARSEN MAHER/WCS

Each year, Wildlife Conservation Society scientists publish more than 300 peer-reviewed studies and papers. “WCS 3-Sentence Science” is a regular tip-sheet — in bite sized helpings — of some of this published work.

Here we present work by WCS’s Paul Calle on parasites found in wild blue iguanas on the island of Grand Cayman.

  1. Researchers examined healthy captive and wild blue iguanas (Cyclura lewisi) from Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands, and found a variety of endoparasites regardless of age, sex, or captive vs wild status, with no type found exclusively in either captive or wild populations.
  2. Ectoparasites from wild adults included adult ticks (Amblyomma torrei) and a single adult mite (Hirstiella trombidiformis).
  3. All are new host records for this species and Grand Cayman; knowledge of parasite status of captive and wild populations is important to evaluate the relative risk of introduction of captive animals into wild populations.

Study and Journal: “Parasites of the blue iguana (Cyclura lewisi) from Grand Cayman Island” from Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine
WCS Co-Author(s): Paul Calle, WCS Vice President for Health Programs and Chief Veterinarian

For more information, contact: Stephen Sautner, 718–220–3682, ssautner@wcs.org.

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Wildlife Conservation Society

Wildlife Conservation Society

WCS saves wildlife and wild places worldwide through science, conservation action, education, and inspiring people to value nature.