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Reproductive Ecology of Two Tropical Iguanid Lizards: Tropidurus torquatus and Platynotus semitaeniatus

Laurie J. Vitt and Stephen R. Goldberg
Copeia
Vol. 1983, No. 1 (Feb. 10, 1983), pp. 131-141
DOI: 10.2307/1444707
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1444707
Page Count: 11
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Reproductive Ecology of Two Tropical Iguanid Lizards: Tropidurus torquatus and Platynotus semitaeniatus
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Abstract

The reproductive ecology of two tropidurine iguanid lizards (Platynotus semitaeniatus and Tropidurus torquatus) was studied in northeastern Brazil over a period of 12 months. Reproductively mature females of T. torquatus ranged from 70 to 107 mm SVL and there were females during all months with enlarged vitellogenic follicles. Mature females of P. semitaeniatus ranged from 58-83 mm SVL. An a priori comparison revealed that more reproduction took place in both species during the dry season (July-Nov.) than during the wet season (Dec.-June). A large percentage of females of both species were, however, reproductive during the early wet season. During every month at least some of the males contained sperm and were thus capable of reproducing. However, a seasonal cycle in testes size was apparent, with largest testes occurring during the dry season. Masses of fat bodies of males and females were greatest during the non-reproductive season and least during the reproductive season. Single clutches of eggs of Tropidurus were deposited under rocks on the ground but large communal nests of Platynotus were found in rock crevices. Clutch size in T. torquatus varied from 3-14 with 6 eggs being most common. Clutch size in P. semitaeniatus varied from 1-3, but 94% of clutches contained only 2 eggs. A short summary of data on tropical lizards suggests that a diversity of reproductive tactics may be found in tropical lizards.

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