On January 21, the National Weather Service issued a forecast that could only be issued in a place like Florida. They warned residents about possible falling iguanas due to cold temperatures.
Since the non-native species are cold-blooded they thrive in warmer climates, which makes Florida ideal. However, when temperatures dip below 50 degrees iguanas begin to have trouble coping with the colder weather.
As the temperature gets even lower, not only do Florida residents bundle up and waterparks close, but iguanas become stunned and “freeze.” Although they may look dead, especially after they lose their grip and begin to fall from trees, the lizards continue to breathe.
When Floridians woke up Wednesday morning many came across frozen iguanas.
So far there haven’t been any reports of the creatures causing any damage as they fell from trees.
While to some, the sight of what appears to be a dead iguana can be unsettling, as soon as the temperature warms up again the iguanas come alive.
If you are concerned about an iguana, Sherry L. Schlueter, Executive Director of the Wildlife Care Center, recommends wrapping the iguana in a warm towel and leaving it in an enclosed area until it becomes mobile again. However, once it wakes up, it’s best not to release it into the wild until it is much warmer.
However, if the temperature remains in the 40s or lower for an extended period of time, the iguanas are at risk of dying. In 2010, the green iguana population in South Florida took a major hit when the region went through a two-week period of extremely cold weather.
The iguanas have since recovered and are back in full force.
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