Yucatan Wildlife
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Reptiles of the Yucatan Peninsula

Loggerhead Turtle Hatchling Loggerhead Turtle Hatchling, (Photo - Hotel Eco Paraíso)
The Yucatan Peninsula is home to over 180 species of reptiles and amphibians that inhabit its rich and ideal natural habitat. A diverse reptile population, from sea turtles to boa constrictors, can be found in all parts of the equally diverse habitat. While some might not be easy to see, all leave their distinct footprint on the Yucatan Peninsula.


  1. Morelet's Crocodile - Crocodylus moreletii
  2. American Crocodile - Crocodylus acutus

Turtles and Tortoises

  1. Green Turtle - Chelonia mydas (Threatened)
  2. Loggerhead Turtle - Caretta caretta (Threatened)
  3. Hawksbill Turtle - Eretmochelys imbricata (Endangered)
  4. Leatherback Turtle - Dermochelys coriacea (Endangered)
  5. Kemp's Ridley Sea Turtle - Lepidochelys kempi (Endangered)
  6. Tabasco Mud Turtle - Kinosternon acutum
  7. Creaser's Mud Turtle - Kinosternon creaseri
  8. White-lipped Mud Turtle - Kinosternon leucostomum
  9. Scorpion Mud Turtle - Kinosternon scorpiodes  ...photo 
  10. Narrow-bridged Musk Turtle - Claudius angustatus
  11. Mexican Giant Musk Turtle - Staurotypus triporcatus
  12. Furrowed Wood Turtle - Rhinoclemmys areolata
  13. Yucatan Box Turtle - Terrapene carolina yucatana
  14. Slider - Trachemys scripta
  15. Central American River Turtle - Dermatemys mawii (in far-southern Quintana Roo & western Campeche)
  16. Common Snapping Turtle - Chelydra serpentina rossignonii


    Morelet's Crocodile Morelet's Crocodile, Coba
  1. Black-beaded Lizard - Heloderma horridu
  2. Dwarf Gecko - Sphaerodactylus glaucus  ...photo 
  3. Spotted Gecko - Sphaerodactylus millepunctatus  ...photo 
  4. Ocellated Dwarf Gecko - Sphaerodactylus argus
  5. House Gecko - Hemidactylus frenatus...photo
  6. Mediterranean Gecko - Hemidactylus turcicus
  7. Saint George Island Gecko - Aristelliger georgeensis
  8. Tuberculate Leaf-toed Gecko - Phyllodactylus tuberculosus
  9. Central American Smooth Gecko (Turnip-tailed Gecko) - Thecadactylus rapicauda
  10. Yucatan Banded Gecko - Coleonyx elegans  ...photo 
  11. Yellow-spotted (Yucatan) Spiny Lizard - Sceloporus chrysostictus (endemic to the Yucatan Peninsula)
  12. Cozumel Spiny Lizard - Sceloporus cozumelae (Endemic to Cozumel and northern coasts of Yucatán peninsula)
  13. Lundell’s Spiny Lizard - Sceloporus lundelli
  14. Blue Spiny Lizard - Sceloporus serrifer
  15. Rose-bellied Spiny Lizard (Rosebelly Lizard) - Sceloporus variabilis (in far-southwestern Quintana Roo)
  16. Black Iguana - Ctenosaura similis
  17. Campeche Spiny-tailed Iguana - Ctenosaura alfredschmidti
  18. Yucatan Spiny-tailed Iguana - Ctenosaura defensor (endemic to the Yucatan, only in the western part of the peninsula)
  19. Green Iguana - Iguana iguana
  20. Eastern Casquehead Iguana - Laemanctus longipes (in far-southern Campeche & far-southwestern Quintana Roo)
  21. Serrated Casquehead Iguana - Laemanctus serratus  ...photo 
  22. Brown Basilisk - Basiliscus vittatus
  23. Smoothhead Helmeted Basilisk (Elegant-headed Basilisk or "Casque-headed Lizard") - Corytophanes cristatus (in south Campeche)
  24. Helmeted Basilisk - Corytophanes hernandezii
  25. Neotropical Green Anole - Norops biporcatus
  26. Brown Anole - Norops sagrei  ...photo 
  27. Ghost Anole - Norops lemurinus
  28. Silky Anole - Norops sericeus
  29. Smooth Anole - Norops rodriguezi
  30. Greater Scaly Anole - Norops tropidonotus
  31. Rainbow Amieva - Amieva undulata
  32. Yucatan Whiptail - Cnemidophorus angusticeps
  33. Checkered Whiptail - Aspidoscelis tesselata (Cnemidophorus tesselatus)
  34. Maslin's Racerunner - Aspidoscelis maslini (Cnemidophorus maslini)
  35. Cozumel Racerunner (Whiptail) - Aspidoscelis cozumela (Cnemidophorus cozumelae)
  36. Rodeck's Whiptail - Aspidoscelis (Cnemidophorus) rodecki (endemic to Islas Contoy & Mujeres off the north Yucatan Peninsula, and on the mainland in the vicinity of Puerto Juarez)
  37. Schwartze's Skink (Yucatan Giant Skink)- Eumeces schwartzei
  38. Sumichrast's Skink - Eumeces sumichrasti
  39. Central American Mabuya (Bronze-backed Climbing Skink) - Mabuya unimarginata


Black-tailed Indigo Snake eating Iguana
Black-tailed Indigo Snake eating Black Iguana Red Coffee Snake
Red Coffee Snake, (Photo - Jim Conrad)

Non-venomous Snakes

  1. Black Blind Snake - Leptotyphlops goudotii
  2. Yucatan Blind Snake - Typhlops microstomus
  3. Boa Constrictor - Boa constrictor
  4. Middle American Burrowing Snake - Adelphicos quadrivirgatus
  5. Rustyhead Snake - Amastridium veliferum
  6. Mussurana - Clelia clelia
  7. Mexican Snake Eater - Clelia scytalina
  8. Eastern Racer - Coluber constrictor
  9. Two-spotted Snake - Coniophanes bipunctatus  ...photo 
  10. Yellowbelly Snake - Coniophanes fissidens  ...photo 
  11. Black-striped Snake - Coniophanes imperialis
  12. Peninsular Stripeless Snake (Yucatan Striped Snake) - Coniophanes meridanus (endemic to the northern end of the Yucatan Peninsula, in northern Campeche and Quintana Roo)
  13. Five-striped Snake - Coniophanes quinquevittatus
  14. Faded Black-striped (Schmidt's Striped) Snake - Coniophanes schmidti
  15. Many-lined Snake (Yucatan Road Guarder) - Conophis lineatus
  16. Snail-eating Thirst Snake (Short-faced Snail Sucker) - Dipsas brevifacies
  17. Middle American Smooth-scaled Racer (Brown Racer) - Dryadophis melanolomus
  18. Black-tailed Indigo Snake or Black-tailed Cribo - Drymarchon (corais?) melanurus
  19. Speckled Racer - Drymobius margaritiferus
  20. Black Blind Snake - Epictia goudotii  ...photo 
  21. Blotched Hooknosed Snake - Ficimia publia
  22. Tehuantepec Hooknose Snake - Ficimia variegata
  23. Keeled Earth Snake - Geophis carinosus
  24. Rosebelly Earth Snake - Geophis rhodogaster  ...photo 
  25. Blunt-headed Tree Snake (Brown Blunt-headed Vine Snake) - Imantodes cenchoa
  26. Central American Tree Snake - Imantodes gemmistratus  ...photo 
  27. Yucatan Blunt-headed Tree Snake - Imantodes tenuissimus
  28. Tropical Milksnake - Lampropeltis triangulum
    Blanchard's or Yucatan Milk Snake is the subspecies that is endemic to the Yucatan.
  29. Rain Forest Cat-eyed Snake - Leptodeira frenata
  30. Northern Cat-eyed Snake - Leptodeira septentrionalis  ...photo 
  31. Green Treesnake (Parrot Snake) - Leptophis ahaetulla
  32. Green-headed Treesnake (Mexican Parrot Snake) - Leptophis mexicanus  ...photo 
  33. Neotropical Whip Snake - Masticophis mentovarius  ...photo 
  34. Salmon-bellied Racer - Mastigodryas melanolomus  ...photo1   ...photo2 
  35. Red Coffee Snake - Ninia sebae
  36. Mexican (Neotropical) Vine Snake - Oxybelis aeneus  ...photo 
  37. Green Vine Snake - Oxybelis fulgidus  ...photo 
  38. Variegated False Coral Snake - Pliocercus (Urotheca) elapoides  ...photo 
  39. Central American (Yellow-red) Rat Snake - Pseudelaphe flavirufus (Elaphe/Pantherophis flavirufa)  ...photo 
  40. Bird-eating Tree Snake (Neotropical Bird Snake, Puffing Snake) - Pseustes poecilonotus  ...photo 
  41. Adorned Graceful Brown (Striped Forest) Snake - Rhadinaea decorata  ...photo 
  42. Guatemala Neckband Snake (Shovel-toothed) Snake - Scaphiodontophis annulatus  ...photo 
  43. Green (Peninsular) Rat Snake - Senticolis triaspis
  44. Banded Snail Sucker - Sibon fasciata
  45. Cloudy Snail-eating Snake (Snail Sucker) - Sibon nebulata  ...photo 
  46. Pigmy Snail Sucker - Sibon sanniolus
  47. Tropical Rat Snake (Tiger Treesnake) - Spilotes pullatus
  48. Scorpion-eating Snake - Stenorrhina freminvillei
  49. Yucatan White-lipped Snake - Symphimus (Opheodrys) mayae  ...photo 
  50. Yucatan Centipede Snake - Tantilla cuniculator
  51. Blackbelly Centipede Snake - Tantilla moesta
  52. Yucatan Dwarf Centipede-eater - Tantillita canula  ...photo 
  53. Linton's Dwarf Short-tail Snake - Tantillita lintoni
  54. Checkered Garter Snake - Thamnophis marcianus
  55. Western Ribbon Snake - Thamnophis proximus
  56. Orangebelly Swamp Snake - Tretanorhinus nigroluteus  ...photo 
  57. Terrestrial Snail Sucker - Tropidodipsas (Sibon) sartorii  ...photo 
  58. Yucatecan Worm Snake - Typhlops microstomus
  59. False Fer-de-lance - Xenodon rabdocephalus  ...photo 

Venomous Snakes

  1. Cantil - Agkistrodon bilineatus
  2. Jumping Pit Viper - Atropoides nummifer
  3. Terciopelo (Fer-de-lance) - Bothrops asper
  4. Eye-lash viper - Bothriechis schlegelii ?? (Please let us know if you have information about the status of this species in the Yucatan)
  5. Yucatan Neotropical Rattlesnake (Cascabel) - Crotalus tzabcan (durissus)  ...photo 
  6. Brown's Coral Snake - Micrurus browni
  7. Variable Coral Snake - Micrurus diastema  ...photo 
  8. Mayan Coral Snake - Micrurus hippocrepis
  9. Central American Coral Snake - Micrurus nigrocinctus  ...photo 
  10. Hognosed Pit Viper - Porthidium nasutum  ...photo 
  11. Slender Hognose Pit Viper - Porthidium ophryomegas  ...photo 
  12. Yucatan Hognose Pit Viper - Porthidium yucatanicum

Note: many of the location details are from Focus on Nature tours list of reptiles  ...link 

Reptile Articles

  • Snakes of the Yucatan, YucatanLiving, Feb 2010  ...link 
  • A posting on FieldHerpForum.com with lots of photos of Anoles and a discussion on identification of the species in the photos, June 2008.  ...link 
  • Follow-up on the decline in hawksbills of the Yucatan region, from WWF's Latin American and Caribbean Marine Turtle Programme, 2005.  ...link 
  • The Campeche "Escorpion", an Unknown Mexican Reptile, by Peter Heimes, México desconocido, May 2000. A great article about the discovery (in 1994) and ecology of the Campeche Spiny-tailed Iguana - Ctenosaura alfredschmidti.  ...link 
  • Morelet's Crocodile at Yucatan Peninsula; Crocodile Specialist Group (WWF) Newsletter; Jan-Mar 2002.  ...link 
Spanish translation
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