The blue iguana (Cyclura lewisi) is an endangered rock iguana species native to Grand Cayman, in the Cayman Islands. Health assessments were conducted on captive and free-roaming iguanas in 2001 and 2003-2014 and were performed in the summer wet season (June-July) of 2003-2004 and 2010-2014 and in the winter dry season (November-December) of 2001 and 2005-2009. Morphometric data were recorded from iguanas when blood samples were collected: 903 samples were collected and data from 890 samples from 775 iguanas were included. Samples were analyzed for hematology, plasma biochemistry, protein electrophoresis, mineral panels, 25-hydroxyvitamin D, and testosterone. Reference intervals were created for captive subadults, captive adults, and free-roaming adults when data were sufficient. Significant differences among these groups were described, as were differences on the basis of sex, season, and origin (captive vs free-roaming). In captive iguanas, most analytes were significantly different between subadults and adults, mature heterophils and copper were significantly higher in the dry season, zinc levels were significantly higher in the wet season, and cholesterol and triglycerides were significantly higher in adult females than adult males. Testosterone in adult males was significantly higher in the dry season. These results will aid in future health assessments and disease investigations in wild and captive populations of blue iguanas and are of comparative value for other Cyclura species that are free-roaming, captive, and, especially, in similar conservation release programs.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Animal Science and Zoology