Falling iguanas possible in South Florida amid temperature drop

FAN Editor

Temperatures are expected to drop even further in South Florida on Saturday — so low, in fact, that the National Weather Service is warning that iguanas could fall from the trees. Iguanas, which are cold blooded, can’t handle cold weather and when the temperatures drop below 50, they become sluggish and appear to be dead. 

The National Weather Service in Miami tweeted on Friday that “some of our Iguana friends may be sleeping in tomorrow morning whether they planned to or not.” It was followed up with “don’t be surprised if you see them falling from trees as lows drop into the 30s and 40s.”

Christmas night will be the coldest night of the season in South Florida with temperatures in the 40s and some upper 30s, according to CBS Miami.

Zoo Miami Communications Director Ron Magill told CBS Miami the danger for iguanas depends on the size of the iguana. He said the larger the iguana, the more cold it can tolerate for longer periods.

He said many iguanas in South Florida have adapted to digging deep burrows, so they are insulated from the cold. Iguanas also tend to live close to large bodies of water, which can be warmer than the air temperatures, so it can help them survive short cold snaps.

Adult iguanas have an average size of 6.6 feet and weight 11 pounds, according to National Geographic. They are also tough enough to land on solid ground from as high as 40 feet and survive, according to National Geographic. 

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