Green Iguana

Iguana iguana

Class: Reptilia Order: Squamata Family: Iguanidae

Size

Weight: 11 lbs
Length: 5-7 ft (including tail)

Lifespan

Lifespan (Wild): 8 years
Lifespan (Captivity): 10-20 years

Diet

Adult green iguanas are primarily herbivorous and feed on leaves, fruit, and flowers. Young iguanas, however, require large amounts of protein so they eat insects and spiders.

Habitat & Range

Rainforest canopies in Central and South America

Interesting Facts

  • Green iguanas are popular as pets. Unfortunately they are difficult to care for, and many pet iguanas die within the first year. They have also become an invasive species in Florida due to pet iguanas escaping or being released into the wild.
  • An iguana’s tail makes up about half its body length. Their tails are used for balance, as well as a defense mechanism. An iguana can use its tail as a whip to defend itself against a predator.
  • Iguanas, like many other lizards, can detach their tail in order to escape predators. The detached tail continues to thrash, distracting the predator, while the iguana runs to safety. The lost tail will grow back over time.

Conservation Status

Least Concern

Threats

This species of iguana is considered common. Some populations are threatened by hunting, however, as a whole the species is not considered at risk at this time.