Biological Invasions

, Volume 20, Issue 4, pp 817–823 | Cite as

First evidence for crossbreeding between invasive Iguana iguana and the native rock iguana (Genus Cyclura) on Little Cayman Island

  • Jeanette B. Moss
  • Mark E. Welch
  • Frederic J. Burton
  • Michael V. Vallee
  • Edward W. Houlcroft
  • Tanja Laaser
  • Glenn P. Gerber
Invasion Note
  • 194 Downloads

Abstract

Green iguanas (Iguana iguana) are invasive throughout the West Indies and co-occur on several islands with native rock iguanas (Genus Cyclura). In August 2016, three hybrid hatchlings were captured on Little Cayman Island, providing the first evidence for a successful crossbreeding event between I. iguana and any Cyclura rock iguana species in the wild. Hybrid status was confirmed with morphological and genetic character analysis. This discovery prompts new concerns for biosecurity in the Caribbean.

Keywords

Iguana Cyclura Hybrid Crossbreeding Caribbean 

Notes

Acknowledgements

The initial discovery of the Sister Islands Rock Iguana/green iguana hybrids is credited to Michael Vallee and Edward Houlcroft of Little Cayman’s “Green Iguana B’Gonna” program. Subsequent captures and genetic sampling was made possible by ongoing research activities supported by Mississippi State University in collaboration with the Cayman Islands Department of Environment and the San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research, with financial contributions from the International Iguana Foundation, Mohammed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund, and the Rufford Foundation. Preliminary mophological assessments were overseen by the Cayman Islands Department of Environment based on photographs taken by Edward Houlcroft. Molecular analyses were carried out at Mississippi State University. The Little Cayman District of the National Trust for the Cayman Islands funded genetic analyses for this study.

Supplementary material

10530_2017_1602_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (155 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 154 kb)

References

  1. Allendorf FW, Leary RF, Spruell P, Wenburg JK (2001) The problems with hybrids: setting conservation guidelines. Trends Ecol Evol 16:613–622.  https://doi.org/10.1016/S0169-5347(01)02290-X CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. An J, Sommer JA, Shorem GD, Williamson JE, Brenneman RA, Louis EE (2004) Characterization of 20 microsatellite marker loci in the west Indian rock iguana (Cyclura nubila). Conserv Genet 5:121–125.  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0106963 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Crispo E, Moore JS, Lee-Yaw JA, Gray SM, Haller BC (2011) Broken barriers: human-induced changes to gene flow and introgression in animals. BioEssays 33:508–518.  https://doi.org/10.1002/bies.201000154 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Falcón W, Ackerman JD, Daehler CC (2012) March of the green iguana: non-native distribution and predicted geographic range of Iguana iguana in the Greater Caribbean region. IRCP Reptil Amphib 19:150–160Google Scholar
  5. Haakonsson J (2016) Green iguana invasion. In: FLICKER: Biomonthly bulletin of the Cayman Islands Department of Environment’s Terrestrial Resources Unit, vol 23, 2–4Google Scholar
  6. Jančúchová-Lásková J, Landová E, Frynta D (2015) Are genetically distinct lizard species able to hybridize? A review. Curr Zool 61:155–180.  https://doi.org/10.1093/czoolo/61.1.155 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Jombart T, Ahmed I (2011) adegenet 1.3-1: new tools for the analysis of genome-wide SNP data. Bioinformatics 27:3070–3071.  https://doi.org/10.1093/bioinformatics/btr521 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  8. Knapp CR, Iverson JB, Buckner SD, Cant SV (2011) Conservation of amphibians and reptiles in the Bahamas. In: Hailey A, Wilson BS, Horrocks J (eds) Conservation of Caribbean Island Herpetofaunas, Vol 2 regional accounts of the West Indies. Brill Academic Publishers, Leiden, pp 53–87CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Lau J, Alberts AC, Chemnick LG, Gerber GP, Jones KC, Mitchell AA, Ryder OA (2009) Isolation and characterization of 23 polymorphic microsatellite loci for a West Indian iguana (Cyclura pinguis) from the British Virgin Islands. Mol Ecol Resour 9:1412–1414.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1755-0998.2009.02683.x CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. López-Torres AL, Claudio-Hernández HJ, Rodríguez-Gómez CA, Longo AV, Joglar RL (2012) Green iguanas (Iguana iguana) in Puerto Rico: is it time for management? Biol Invasions 14:35–45.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10530-011-0057-0 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Malone CL, Wheeler T, Taylor JF, Davis SK (2000) Phylogeography of the Caribbean rock iguana (Cyclura): implications for conservation and insights on the biogeographic history of the West Indies. Mol Phylogenet Evol 17:269–279. https://doi.org/10.1554/0014-3820(2000)054[0245:TDONSA]2.0.CO;2CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Malone CL, Knapp CR, Taylor JF, Davis SK (2003) Genetic consequences of Pliestocene fragmentation: isolation, drift, and loss of diversity in rock iguanas (Cyclura). Conserv Genet 4:1–15.  https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1021885323539 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Martin JL, Knapp CR, Gerber GP, Thorpe RS, Welch ME (2015) Phylogeography of the endangered lesser Antillean iguana, Iguana delicatissima: a recent diaspora in an archipelago known for ancient herpetological endemism. J Hered 106:315–321.  https://doi.org/10.1093/jhered/esv004 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. Noor MAF (1999) Reinforcement and other consequences of sympatry. Heredity 83:503–508.  https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1365-2540.1999.00632.x CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. Rassmann K, Trillmich F, Tautz D (1997) Hybridization between the Galapagos land and marine iguana (Conolophus subcristatus and Amblyrhynchus cristatus) on Plaza Sur. J Zool 242:729–739.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1469-7998.1997.tb05822.x CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Rhymer JM, Simberloff D (1996) Extinction by hybridization and introgression. Ann Rev Ecol Syst 27:83–109.  https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev.ecolsys.27.1.83 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Rosas KG, Pérez-Buitrago J, Acevedo JP, Martínez N, Funk SM (2008) Development and characterization of 11 microsatellite loci for the Mona Island iguana (Cyclura cornuta stejnegeri). Mol Ecol Resour 8:825–827.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1755-0998.2007.02080.x CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Starostova Z, Rehak I, Frynta D (2010) New haplotypes of Cyclura nubila nubila from Cuba changed the phylogenetic tree of rock iguanas: a challenge for conservation strategies? Amphib Reptil 31:134–143.  https://doi.org/10.1163/156853810790457795 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Stephen CL, Reynoso VH, Collett WS, Hasbun CR, Breinholt JW (2013) Geographical structure and cryptic lineages within common green iguanas, Iguana iguana. J Biogeogr 40:50–62.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2699.2012.02780.x CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Valette V, Filipová L, Vuillaume B, Cherbonnel C, Risterucci AM, Delaunay C (2013) Isolation and characterization of microsatellite loci from Iguana delicatissima (Reptilia: Iguanidae), new perspectives for investigation of hybridization events with Iguana iguana. Conserv Genet Resour 5:173–175.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s12686-012-9761-z CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Vuillaume B, Valette V, Lepais O, Grandjean F, Breuil M (2015) Genetic evidence of hybridization between endangered native species Iguana delicatissima and the invasive Iguana iguana (Reptilia, Iguanidae) in the Lesser Antilles: management implications. PLoS ONE 10:e0127575.  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0127575 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  22. Welch ME, Long GJ, Berk JW, Getz AH, Gerber GP, Wallace LE (2011) Twenty-nine polymorphic microsatellite loci in Cyclura carinata, the Turks and Caicos Iguana, a critically endangered island endemic. Conserv Genet Resour 3:208–212.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s12686-010-9324-0 Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Biological Sciences DepartmentMississippi State UniversityMississippi StateUSA
  2. 2.Department of EnvironmentGrand CaymanCayman Islands
  3. 3.Little Cayman District of the National Trust for the Cayman IslandsLittle CaymanCayman Islands
  4. 4.Institute for Conservation ResearchSan Diego Zoo GlobalEscondidoUSA

Personalised recommendations