Description of the Santa Fe land iguana
The Santa Fe land iguana, also known by the scientific name Conolophus pallidus, is a species of land iguana endemic to Santa Fe Island in the Galapagos archipelago. These iguanas have a unique appearance with a pale grey or light brown coloration and small, pointed scales on their backs. They also have shorter and blunter dorsal spines than other Galapagos land iguana species. Males have larger, more robust heads than females, as well as larger femoral pores. Santa Fe land iguanas are primarily herbivorous, feeding mainly on giant cacti endemic to the island, as well as other succulent plants. They may also feed on insects and small animals, but this food is only a small part of their diet. These land iguanas are considered unique and vulnerable, as their habitat is limited to Santa Fe Island. They have also been threatened by the introduction of non-native animals such as goats and rats, which have destroyed their habitat and predated their eggs. However, thanks to conservation efforts, their population has increased in recent years.
When to see them?
Santa Fe land iguanas can be observed year-round. However, for the best experience, it is recommended to visit Santa Fe Island during the dry season which runs from June to December. During the dry season, the weather is generally sunny and dry, providing ideal conditions for observing Galapagos wildlife, including the Santa Fe land iguana. Land iguanas are more active during the cooler hours of the day, in the early morning or late afternoon.
Where to observe them?
The Santa Fe land iguana is endemic to the island of Santa Fe. To observe this species of land iguana, it is therefore necessary to go to Santa Fe island.