Raya-García, E., I. Suazo-Ortuño, J. Campos-García, J. Martín & J. Alvarado-Díaz

In Issues 2021

Chemical differences in femoral gland secretions of arboreal and terrestrial tropical lizards from western Mexico. pp. 371-377.

Abstract. Chemical signals in animals stimulate different links and relationships. In lizards, chemical signals play an essential role in reproductive and social communication. Although lizard species inhabit tropical ecosystems in great diversity, the chemical composition of the femoral gland secretions that tropical lizards use for communication is poorly known. In this work, we used gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) to identify and compare the main compounds contained in the femoral gland secretions of the males of three species of arboreal lizards, Hemidactylus frenatus, Sceloporus melanorhinus, and Urosaurus bicarinatus; and of two species of terrestrial lizards, Aspidoscelis lineattissimus and Sceloporus pyrocephalus. We identified twelve lipophilic compounds contained, corresponding to fatty acid esters (~58%), carboxylic fatty acids (~25%), and other compounds (~17%). Carboxylic acids, mainly with esters content, revealed significant differences between lizard species. The potential role of these chemical compounds to social and sexual behaviours is discussed.

Key words. Chemical signals, femoral glands, interspecific variation, Squamata, tropical lizards.

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