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Iguana Alert! What to do you find a frozen iguana

The curious case of cold weather in SWFL many of us could encounter
Posted at 5:54 PM, Jan 19, 2024
and last updated 2024-01-19 17:54:44-05

CAPE CORAL, Fla. — This weekend Fox 4 meteorologists are predicting temperatures to drop into the 30s and 40s Saturday night into Sunday morning. This cold snap doesn’t mean falling snow, but instead falling iguanas. That means, we could see them not in their normal trees but laying frozen on road. So, what do you do if you find these cold stunned iguanas.

These non-native reptiles are cold-blooded, and with the cold temperatures they become cold stunned and temporarily lose muscle control. If homeowners find a stunned iguana, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission says do not to bring it inside your home or car.

Why? Well, FWC says they have sharp teeth and claws, and when they recover, they can use them to act defensively and pose a safety risk.

And being an invasive species, it is illegal to own one without a permit. So, don’t think about keeping it as a new family pet.

So, what do you do?

FWC says if you find a stunned iguana you should humanely kill it. They define killing them humane manner as "an immediate loss of consciousness and destruction of the brain." Or you can contact a professional pest control or wildlife trapper for help.

Iguanas can cause damage to sidewalks, foundations and seawalls because they dig burrows. They also can damage residential and commercial agriculture, which is why FWC says to kill them.