Conservation / Project Abronia
Arboreal Alligator Lizards of the genus Abronia are among the most endangered species of lizards in the world. In Guatemala, the genus comprises ten species, eight of them endemic; until recently, two species (Abronia campbelli and A. frosti) were thought to be extinct. Project Abronia was initiated by the Guatemalan NGO Zootropic in late 2009, with support from Zoo Atlanta, with the objective of protecting these cloud-forest-dwelling reptiles and their habitat.
The conservation plan for these secretive lizards involves basic research, workshops and environmental talks held in the areas where the various species are located, and in situ as well as ex situ breeding programs. Since habitat destruction is the primary threat to Abronia species, habitat protection, restoration, and reforestation are essential. The IRCF has been able to contribute critical equipment for telemetry studies and hopes to assist with other aspects of the project as funding is acquired.