Reptiles and Amphibians
- Where to Go
- The Best of the Dominican Republic
- A Nature Lover’s Dominican Trek
- The Sexiest Dominican Beaches
- Historical Dominican Road Trip
- A Dominican Culture Tour
- Carnaval and Its Masks
- Planning Your Dominican Wedding
- Dominican Adventures
- Golfing the Dominican Republic
- Dominican Music and Dance
- La Ruta del Mango
- Day-Tripping in Monte Plata
- The Best Small Resorts
While there are snakes and frogs on the island, they are greatly outnumbered by the more than 20 species of lizards.
Lago Enriquillo, with its dry, rocky ground, is the preferred location for the rhinoceros iguana. This species of iguana is so named because of the small horns on the males’ snouts and their gray color, which make them look like rhinoceroses. A full-grown rhinoceros iguana can be over a meter in length. Although they may look scary, they are indeed rather shy and are herbivores. Ricord iguanas are also found at Lago Enriquillo and live only in the Dominican Republic. These red-eyed creatures are omnivorous and can live more than 30 years.
The olive-brown American crocodile also makes its home in Lago Enriquillo. In fact it has gotten so comfortable in the Dominican Republic that it represents one of the largest wildlife crocodile populations in the world. With Lago Enriquillo four times saltier than the sea, the crocs tend to lurk near the river inlets to try to catch some fresh water. However, with the diversion of these rivers (for irrigation purposes) the crocodile babies are suffering, since they have not yet developed their tolerance to the briny stew. The average male can grow to be four meters long. The crocodiles mainly feed on fish, turtles, and occasionally goats. They are protected under Dominican law, and the best time to go to Lago Enriquillo to see them is in the early morning or late afternoon.
© Ana Chavier Caamaño from Moon Dominican Republic, 4th edition