Iguanas


Iguanas are of the lizard family and are native to the Caribbean and South and Central America. There are two kinds of iguanas – the green iguana and the Lesser Antilles iguana. An iguana is characterized by a row of spikes along the length of its spine to the tip of the tail. The spikes are highest in the neck area and gradually get shorter as they reach towards the tail.

An iguana does have two eyes, but there is a third eye in the top of their head. This is called the Parietal eye and looks like a pale spot on the head. They do have excellent vision and can see for a long distance and can see shapes. This is essential for them to survive in the jungles of their natural habitat. They also need this vision to help them find food.

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The Green Iguana is the one most used as pets. If you do have an iguana as a pet, you do have to spend a lot of time caring for its needs in order to keep it healthy. Although they will eat meat, feeding them excessive amounts will result in kidney failure. The main diet of the iguana consists of fresh leafy vegetables. Although they will eat lettuce, it does not provide them with any nutritional content.

You should keep your iguana in a large aquarium without the water in it. It does need heat, typically temperatures ranging from 75 to 90 degrees. The pet iguanas sold in pet stores are tame and will live peacefully with humans. Occasionally, you may find an iguana that is not tame and it may bite or be dangerous, especially with children. They do not like to be picked up, petted or handled for any length of time. They can also be toilet trained to go outside to use the bathroom. Socialization of iguanas, though, may take many years.

The longest living iguana was a blue iguana that was captured on the Cayman Islands. It lived to the age of 69.





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