Isla Magueyes

Isla Magueyes (Isle of Maguey) is a 7.2 hectares (0.028 sq mi; 0.072 km2) island 50 metres (160 ft) from the southwest coast of the island of Puerto Rico.[1] It is encircled with mangrove and has an interior of dry scrub habitat, where it gets its name.[2] It is named for the presence of many century plants or maguey (Agave americana). The surrounding shelf of the island is mostly coral reef. There are buildings on the western end of the island associated with the Department of Marine Sciences, University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez.[3] UPR- Mayagüez is the most important center in the Atlantic region for the study of tropical marine science due to its location, facilities, and first-rate researchers.[4] The research facilities includes the Puerto Rico Water Resources and Environmental Research Institute, the Caribbean Coral Reef Institute (CCRI), the Research and Development Center, the Agricultural Research Station and the Caribbean Atmospheric Research Center (ATMOSCarib).[3][4]

Isla Magueyes
Isla Magueyes is located in Puerto Rico
Isla Magueyes
Isla Magueyes
Isla Magueyes is located in Lesser Antilles
Isla Magueyes
Isla Magueyes
Isla Magueyes is located in Caribbean
Isla Magueyes
Isla Magueyes
Coordinates17°58′08″N 67°02′39″W / 17.96889°N 67.04417°WCoordinates: 17°58′08″N 67°02′39″W / 17.96889°N 67.04417°W
ArchipelagoGreater Antilles
Area0.072 km2 (0.028 sq mi)
Additional information
Time zone


A free-ranging colony of feral Cuban iguanas, released from a zoo that was closed on the island in the 1950s inhabit all parts of the island.[1][2][5][6] While the iguanas are endangered in their native Cuba and are currently protected by the US Endangered Species Act, there has been talk of eliminating or reducing the population here as they are considered an invasive species. Currently dogs, cats, and most tourists are barred from the island to protect the iguanas.[7] This has turned the island into somewhat of an unofficial bird sanctuary and brown pelicans, cattle egrets, and herons are commonly observed here.[7]

The iguana colony has been used as a research control group for various experiments concerning animal communication and evolution.[8]


  1. ^ a b Allison Alberts (2004). Iguanas: biology and conservation. University of California Press. p. 217. ISBN 0-520-23854-0.
  2. ^ a b Cohen, Tina; Ron Bernthal (2006). Puerto Rico Off the Beaten Path. GPP Travel. p. 192. ISBN 978-0-7627-4211-0.
  3. ^ a b "Department of Marine Sciences". University of Puerto Rico – Mayagüez (UPRM). Retrieved December 20, 2009.
  4. ^ a b "Caribbean Coral Reef Institute Website". University of Puerto Rico – Mayagüez (UPRM). Retrieved December 20, 2009.
  5. ^ Brendan Sainsbury, Nate Cavalieri (2008). Puerto Rico. Lonely Planet. p. 206. ISBN 1-74104-723-4.
  6. ^ Christian, Keith A. (1986). "Aspects of the life history of Cuban Iguanas on Isla Magueyes, Puerto Rico" (PDF). Caribbean Journal of Science. University of Puerto Rico. 22 (3–4): 159–164. Retrieved December 4, 2009.
  7. ^ a b Williams, E. H.; L. Bunkley-Williams; I. Lopez-Irizarry (1992). "Die-off of brown pelicans in Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands". American Birds. 46 (12): 1106–1108.
  8. ^ Martins, Emilia P.; J. Lamont (1998). "Evolution of communication and social behavior: a comparative study of Cyclura rock iguanas". Animal Behaviour. Animal Behavior Society. 55 (6): 1685–1706. doi:10.1006/anbe.1997.0722. PMID 9642012.
Cyclura nubila

The Cuban rock iguana (Cyclura nubila), also known as the Cuban ground iguana or Cuban iguana, is a species of lizard of the iguana family. It is the largest of the West Indian rock iguanas (genus Cyclura), one of the most endangered groups of lizards. This herbivorous species with red eyes, a thick tail, and spiked jowls is one of the largest lizards in the Caribbean.

The Cuban iguana is distributed throughout the rocky southern coastal areas of mainland Cuba and its surrounding islets with a feral population thriving on Isla Magueyes, Puerto Rico. A subspecies is found on the Cayman Islands of Little Cayman and Cayman Brac. Females guard their nest sites and often nest in sites excavated by Cuban crocodiles. As a defense measure, the Cuban iguana often makes its home within or near prickly-pear cacti.

Although the wild population is in decline because of predation by feral animals and habitat loss caused by human agricultural development, the numbers of iguanas have been bolstered as a result of captive-breeding and other conservation programs. Cyclura nubila has been used to study evolution and animal communication, and its captive-breeding program has been a model for other endangered lizards in the Caribbean.

Hurricane Edith (1963)

Hurricane Edith brought flooding and wind damage to portions of the Greater and Lesser Antilles. The sixth tropical storm and fifth hurricane of the 1963 season, Edith developed east of the Windward Islands on September 23 from an Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) disturbance. Initially a tropical depression, it strengthened into Tropical Storm Edith the next day. Shortly thereafter, Edith reached hurricane status. Edith fluctuated between Category 1 and 2 status as it moved west-northwest. Upon reaching Category 2 intensity on September 25, the storm peaked with winds of 100 mph (155 km/h). After striking Saint Lucia on September 25, the storm traversed the eastern Caribbean Sea. Curving north-northwest on September 26, Edith made landfall near La Romana, Dominican Republic, early on the following day as a minimal hurricane. Interaction with land and an upper-level trough caused Edith to weaken to a tropical storm on September 28 and to a tropical depression by the next day. The storm dissipated just east of the Bahamas on September 29.

In Martinique, a wind gust of 127 mph (204 km/h) was observed at Le Lamentin Airport; tides about 8 ft (2.4 m) above normal and heavy rainfall impacted the island. Throughout the island, about 6,000 homes were demolished and 13,000 others were severely impacted. Agriculture suffered significantly, with bananas and other food crops destroyed, while sugar cane experienced significant damage. Winds up to 80 mph (130 km/h) caused significant damage on Dominica and strong winds on Saint Lucia ruined about half of the island's banana crop. In Puerto Rico, the storm brought heavy rainfall to the southwest corner of the island and abnormally high tides to the south coast. Several beach front properties were badly damaged, particularly in the Salinas municipality. Overall, Edith caused 10 deaths, all on Martinique, and approximately $46.6 million (1963 USD) in damage.

Index of Puerto Rico-related articles

The following is an alphabetical list of articles related to the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.

Lajas, Puerto Rico

Lajas (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈlaxas]) is a municipality of Puerto Rico (U.S.) located in southwestern Puerto Rico, on the southern coast of the island, bordering the Caribbean Sea, south of San Germán and Sabana Grande; east of Cabo Rojo; and west of Guánica. Lajas is spread over 11 wards plus Lajas Pueblo (the downtown area and the administrative center of the city). It is part of the San Germán-Cabo Rojo Metropolitan Statistical Area.

List of Caribbean islands

A list of islands in the Caribbean Sea, in alphabetical order by country of ownership and/or those with full independence and autonomy.

List of cays and islets of Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico has two inhabited off-shore islands, and many cays and uninhabited islands.

List of islands of Puerto Rico

This is a list of islands of Puerto Rico.

The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico has over 143 islands, cays, islets, and atolls. Only the main island of Puerto Rico (3,363 sq mi [8,710 km2]) and the islands of Vieques (51 sq mi [130 km2]), and Culebra (10 sq mi [26 km2]) are inhabited. Mona Island (22 sq mi [57 km2]) has personnel from the Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources (DNER) stationed year-around but no private citizens inhabit it (other than overnight camping guests and nature enthusiasts). Caja de Muertos Island (0.58 sq mi [1.5 km2]) is also a DNER Nature Reserve, while Desecheo Island (0.58 sq mi [1.5 km2]) is a National Wildlife Refuge administrated by the US Fish and Wildlife Service.

The other 140 islands, cays, islets and atolls are not inhabited. Three of the islands are in private hands: Palomino Island, which is rented on a long-term lease to El Conquistador Hotel, and Isla de Ramos and Isla de Lobos.


Los Negritos

Roca Cocinera

Roca Resuello

Tres Hermanas


Tres Hermanos


Isla San Juan

Cabo Rojo

Cayo Fanduca

Isla de Ratones

Roca Ola

Roca Velasquez


Penon Brusi

Penon de Afuera


Islote Numero dos


Arrecife Barriles

Arrecife Hermanos

Cabeza de Perro

Cayo Cabritas

Cayo Pinerito

Isla Cabras

Isla Pineros

Las Lavanderas del Este

Las Lavanderas del Oeste

Piragua de Adentro

Piragua de Afuera



Cayo Ballena

Cayo Botella

Cayo de Luis Peña

Cayo del Agua

Cayo Lobito

Cayo Lobo

Cayo Matojo

Cayo Norte

Cayo Pirata

Cayo Raton

Cayo Sombrerito

Cayo Tiburon

Cayo Verde

Cayo Yerba

Cayos Geniqui

El Ancon

El Mono

Isla Culebrita

Isla de Culebra

Las Hermanas

Los Gemelos



Piedra del Norte (part of Culebrita)

Piedra Stevens

Roca Culumna (part of Cayo Lobito)

Roca Speck

Cayo Tuna

Roca Lavador (awash)

Cayo Botijuela


Cayo Ahogado

Cayo Diablo

Cayo Icacos

Cayo Largo

Cayo Lobos

Cayo Obispo

Cayo Ratones

Isla de Ramos

Isla Palominito

Isla Palominos

La Blanquilla

La Cordillera

Las Cucarachas

Los Farallones


Cayo Don Luis

Cayo Terremoto

Cayos de Caña Gorda

Gilligan's Island = Cayo Aurora = Cayo Caña Gorda

Cayo Honda

Isla Ballena


Cayo Caribes

Mata Redonda


Cayo Maria Langa

Cayo Mata


Cayo Batata

Cayo Santiago (Monkey Island)

Juana Diaz

Cayo Berberia


Cayo Bayo

Cayo Caracoles

Cayo Collado

Cayo Corral

Cayo Enrique

Cayo Mata Seca

Cayo Vieques

Isla Cueva

Isla Guayacan

Isla Magueyes

Isla Matei


Isla La Cancora

Islote de Juan Perez

Punta Larga

Punta Mosquitos


Desecheo Island

Mona Island

Monito Island


Bajo Evelyn

Cayo Algodones


Cayos Caribe

Cayo Palomas

Cayo Parguera

Cayo Rio


Cayo Arenas

Isla de Cardona

Isla de Ratones

Isla del Frio

Isla Caja de Muertos

Isla Morrillito

Isla de Gatas

Isla de Jueyes


Cayo Mata

Cayo Morrillo

Cayo Puerca

Cayos de Barca

Cayos de Pajaros

Cayos de Ratones

San Juan

Isla Guachinanga

Isla Piedra

Penon de San Jorge

Santa Isabel

Cayo Alfenique

Cayos Cabezazos

Cayos de Caracoles

Isla Puerca

Toa Baja

Isla de Cabras

Isla de las Palomas

Las Cabritas

Vega Baja

Isla de Cerro Gordo

Isletas de Garzas


Cayo Chiva

Cayo de Tierra

Pleasure island

Cayo Jalova

Cayo Jalovita

Cayo Real

Isla Chiva

Isla de Vieques

Isla Yallis

Roca Alcatraz

Roca Cucaracha

Pholidoscelis wetmorei

Pholidoscelis wetmorei is a species of lizard in the family Teiidae (whiptails). It is endemic to Puerto Rico. Its common names include the Puerto Rican blue-tailed ameiva, Wetmore's ameiva, and blue-tailed ground lizard.

Spanish West Indies

The Spanish West Indies or the Spanish Antilles (also known as "Las Antillas Occidentales" or simply "Las Antillas Españolas" in Spanish) was the former name of the Spanish colonies in the Caribbean. In terms of governance of the Spanish Empire, The Indies was the designation for all its overseas territories and was overseen by the Council of the Indies, founded in 1524 and based in Spain. When the crown established the Viceroyalty of New Spain in 1535, the islands of the Caribbean came under its jurisdiction.

The islands claimed by Spain were Hispaniola, modern Haiti and the Dominican Republic; Cuba, Puerto Rico, Saint Martin, the Virgin Islands, Anguilla, Montserrat, Guadalupe and the Lesser Antilles, Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, Venezuela (Margarita island), Trinidad, and the Bay Islands.

The islands that later became the Spanish West Indies were the focus of the voyages of the Spanish expedition of Christopher Columbus in America. Largely due to the familiarity that Spaniards gained from Columbus's voyages, the islands were also the first lands to be permanently colonized by Spanish in the Americas. The Spanish West Indies were also the most enduring part of Spain's American Empire, only being surrendered in 1898 at the end of the Spanish–American War. For over three centuries, Spain controlled a network of ports in the Caribbean including Havana (Cuba), San Juan (Puerto Rico), Cartagena de Indias (Colombia), Veracruz (Mexico), and Portobelo, Panama, which were connected by galleon routes.

Some smaller islands were seized or ceded to other European powers as a result of war, or diplomatic agreements during the 17th and 18th centuries. Others such as Dominican Republic gained their independence in the 19th century.


A wetland is a distinct ecosystem that is inundated by water, either permanently or seasonally, where oxygen-free processes prevail. The primary factor that distinguishes wetlands from other land forms or water bodies is the characteristic vegetation of aquatic plants, adapted to the unique hydric soil. Wetlands play a number of functions, including water purification, water storage, processing of carbon and other nutrients, stabilization of shorelines, and support of plants and animals. Wetlands are also considered the most biologically diverse of all ecosystems, serving as home to a wide range of plant and animal life. Whether any individual wetland performs these functions, and the degree to which it performs them, depends on characteristics of that wetland and the lands and waters near it. Methods for rapidly assessing these functions, wetland ecological health, and general wetland condition have been developed in many regions and have contributed to wetland conservation partly by raising public awareness of the functions and the ecosystem services some wetlands provide.Wetlands occur naturally on every continent. The main wetland types are swamp, marsh, bog, and fen; sub-types include mangrove forest, carr, pocosin, floodplains, mire, vernal pool, sink, and many others. Many peatlands are wetlands. The water in wetlands is either freshwater, brackish, or saltwater.

Wetlands can be tidal (inundated by tides) or non-tidal. The largest wetlands include the Amazon River basin, the West Siberian Plain, the Pantanal in South America, and the Sundarbans in the Ganges-Brahmaputra delta.The UN Millennium Ecosystem Assessment determined that environmental degradation is more prominent within wetland systems than any other ecosystem on Earth.Constructed wetlands are used to treat municipal and industrial wastewater as well as stormwater runoff. They may also play a role in water-sensitive urban design.

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