bird species now
appear to be extinct in neighboring Haiti
and survive only in the Dominican Republic: Ridgway’s
Bay-breasted Cuckoo (BirdLife
and the Eastern Chat-Tanager (IBC)
The Dominican Republic is home to the world's smallest lizard, the Jaragua Dwarf Gecko Sphaerodactylus ariasae (BBC). A diverse endemic anole fauna includes the Dominican Giant Anole Anolis baleatus (flickr), the Cordillera Central Twig Anole Anolis insolitus (flickr), and the Red-fanned Stout Anole Anolis marcanoi (Reptile Database). Other endemic reptiles include the Hispaniolan Ground Iguana Cyclura ricordi (ARKive), the Serpentine Four-toed Galliwasp Celestus agasepsoides (Caribherp), the Hispaniolan Maskless Curlytail Leiocephalus lunatus (Wildherps), the Hispaniolan Giant Blindsnake Typhlops schwartzi (Caribherp), and the Martin Garcia Threadsnake Mitophis asbolepis (Caribherp).
Amphibians unique to the Dominican Republic include the Hispaniolan Yellow Tree Frog (ARKive), the Hispaniolan Crestless Toad (IUCN) (eol), the Yellow Split-toed Frog (ARKive), the Montane Cricket Frog (Caribherp), the Hispaniolan Cordillera Frog (ARKive), the Hispaniolan Melodius Frog (flickr), and the recently described Eleutherodactylus ligiae and Eleutherodactylus neiba (both at Species New to Science).
Freshwater fish restricted to the Dominican Republic include the Hispaniolan Rivulus Rivulus roloffi (flickr), the Sulfur Limia Limia sulphurophila (FishBase), Perugia’s Limia Limia perugiae (eol), the Striped Limia Limia zonata (flickr), the Elegant Molly Poecilia elegans (flickr), the Jaragua Pupfish Cyprinodon nichollsi (AMNH pdf file), and the Black-and-blue Pupfish Cyprinodon higuey (FishBase).
Longhorned beetles known only from the Dominican Republic include Oedudes anulatus (Species ID), Mecosarthron domingoensis (eol), and Phoenicus sanguinipennis (Univ. Nebraska pdf file). Endemic butterflies include Calisto tasajera (Butterflies of America), Calisto galli (Butterflies of America), Strymon andrewi (Butterflies of America), and Cyclargus kathleena (Butterflies of America). Other endemic insects include a silk moth Hispaniodirphia lemaireiana (Saturniidae World), a tiger moth Westindia haxairei (BOLD), an ant Pheidole harlequina (AntWiki), a stick insect Tainophasma monticola (ResearchGate pdf file), and seven recently described species of stinkbugs (p. 31 of NDSU pdf file).
endemic invertebrates include the world's smallest scorpion Microtityus minimus
Files), a tarantula Avicularia
a pholcid spider Tainonia
samana (Pholcidae), a cave-dwelling
to Zoology), and several land
snails: Abbottella moreletiana
and Helicina prasinata
Orchids found solely in the Dominican Republic include Lepanthopsis constanzensis (IOPSE), Tolumnia henekenii (Orchids Online), and Psychilis dodii (IOPSE). Other endemic plants include the Dominican Cherry Palm Pseudophoenix ekmanii (ARKive), a silver palm Coccothrinax boschiana (Int'l Palm Soc.), Podocarpus hispaniolensis (Albion College), Pitcairnia domingensis (FCBS), Cinnamodendron ekmanii (Top Tropicals), Vachellia barahonensis (acaciaID), Cubanola domingensis (Wikipedia), Magnolia pallescens (flickr), the Bayahibe Rose Pereskia quisqueyana (ARKive), Melocactus pedernalensis (flickr), Isidorea pungens (flickr), and Pinguicula casabitoana (World of Pinguicula). Endemic genera include Salcedoa (Hoy), Anacaona (NYBG), Linnaeosicyos (UMSL pdf file), Sarcopilea (flickr), Vegaea (Facebook), and Pedinopetalum (NYBG).
The Dominican Republic is part of the Caribbean Islands biodiversity hotspot (CEPF). Important terrestrial ecoregions include the Hispaniolan Pine Forests (EoE) and the Hispaniolan Moist Forests (EoE). With Haiti now almost completely deforested, many formerly more widely ranging Hispaniolan endemic species (in addition to the birds mentioned above) and genera (15 terrestrial vertebrate genera are unique to the island) may already survive only in the Dominican Republic.