Land Iguana & Opuntia
Land Iguana (Conolophus subcristatus) & Giant Prickly Pear Cactus (Opuntia echios) on South Plaza Island.
ECUADOR. South America
One of two endemic species of these large, yellow lizards found in the islands.
Conolophus subcristatus lives on six of the islands. (Fernandina, Isabela, Santa Cruz, South Plaza, Baltra and Seymour) They are vegetarian and eat mostly Opuntia cactus. However it has been reported that they will eat carrion if available.
South Plazas is part of the Arid Zone
Opuntia are one of the most distinctive Galapagos plants. The development of the tree form was due to competition of other cactus seedlings for light as well as grazing pressure from giant tortoises. They have spines on their trunks to prevent herbivores from eating them as well as to consense water.