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Territorial Struggles

February 12, 2024

Territorial Struggles

- as seen by -

Martin Brogger Martin Brogger

On the rocky terrain of Isla Tova off northern Patagonia in Argentina, I’ve observed Fitzinger’s tree iguanas (Liolaemus fitzingerii) in plain sight. In the hot climate, two strong males engage in a dramatic battle for dominance. This territorial showdown is common when they’re competing for limited resources.

The lizards demonstrate their strength by performing ritualized push-ups, circling each other with jaws wide open to symbolically declare their power. The fight between these reptiles illustrates the struggle for survival in the tough Patagonian environment, where only the winner claims the territory and its special privileges including prime sunlight spots, better hunting grounds, or more suitable areas for reproduction and nesting.

These iguanas are listed as “Least Concern” by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, but, as with many reptile species, habitat destruction and fragmentation can pose threats to their populations.

Nikon D7200

, Argentina Map It


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February 12, 2024 at 9:20 pm

Amazing animals!!