Iguanas so cold....

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by ScentofCedar, Jan 9, 2010.

  1. ScentofCedar

    ScentofCedar New Member

    I saw this on our local news last night: A four year old in a city near ours (Florida) has been out PICKING UP THE IGUANAS THAT ARE SO COLD THEY ARE STIFFENING UP AND FALLING OUT OF THE TREES. The little girl had what looked like between six and eight very stiff iguanas in her box. I haven't talked to anyone yet who knows whether the iguanas are frozen solid, or whether they will thaw out and recover once it is warmer.

    I am thinking they are only in hibernation mode or something, because I don't THINK it has been cold enough here for the iguanas to have frozen solid. (And boy, they looked pretty stiff!)

    Isn't that the craziest thing you ever heard?

  2. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    you're correct. They are not frozen, they are what is called 'torpid'. Basically, being cold-blooded animals, their systems shut down when temps drop below a certain level.

    They will warm back up and be just fine. One thing to be aware of is that iguanas in FL are NOT a native species. Like pythons, the iguanas were released into the area by pet owners who found their erstwhile pets to have gotten too big and/or too hard to feed. Iguanas can grow to lengths in excess of six feet including their tails and they aren't anywhere near so "cute" as adults--they are pretty much vegetarians but do require a specialized diet.

    Adults, especially males, can get quite nasty when they have mating on their minds.
  3. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    WOW! That is cold for Florida!! How are people handling the weather if it is that cold? I can remember a trip to FL where it snowed some flurries. The rental car people did not know how to turn on the windshield defrosters and some of the cars on the road had their antifreeze freeze in the radiators overnight! No one seemed to know what to do. The rental car people kept trying to get the ice off of cars by pouring hot water on them, LOL!!! It might have worked if they ran the defroster and the windshield wipers.

    I hope no one in your family is having problems because of the cold.
  4. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    My poor Iguana is none too happy with the current cold snap himself...lol. We have had to add extra heat lamps because my house isnt quite warm enough for him. He doesnt much want to move off his heat rock...lol.
  5. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    Janet, watch the little guy, if he/she is too cold, he/she will not be able to utilize food. I like iggies, but in my opinion, you need to set them up in a proper vivarium as opposed to an acquarium or similar.

    They're a LOT happier in that sort of environment, but it's difficult to set something like that up at home.
  6. Abbey

    Abbey Spork Queen

    I saw this one the news yesterday. The poor guys just fall out of trees in the hybernating stage. Tis a bit cold for Florida.

  7. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    Wow...that is interesting.

    It is seriously cold here (see my other post). My hubbys new cat...a total outside cat...was hanging around the back door, so we have brought her in every night.

    People are bundled up. You can't find a heater anywhere or any hot chocolate for that matter.

    Even my heater is not really working properly...hardly anyone on the streets...in the stores, etc.

    Sadly, we've had more homeless than typical .... no doubt the shelters are filled caused they are more visible in the last few days.

    Also sad/weird/concerning....is that difficult child picked up a homeless couple and has them at her place. This is why she could not spend the last few nights at our place. The only positive, is that they seem like decent people. Hard to say...so very concerning this difficult child "stuff."

    See my other post...cute link...I think anyway.
  8. ScentofCedar

    ScentofCedar New Member

    Going, that's good to know. (That the iguanas will warm up and be just fine.) How disconcerting to be an iguana though, huh? There you are one minute, lord of the treetops. A cold wind blows and the next thing you know, you wake up on the ground AND YOU CAN'T MOVE A MUSCLE.

    Now, that is crazy.

    Must be the same with snakes and alligators too?


    Iguanas are pretty cute, but snakes and alligators ~ eewwhh.

    Susiestar, we're fine. Our house has these tall ceilings though? And down here, you heat through the air conditioning vents in the ceiling? Heat rises, of course. So, we are warm as toast upstairs, but downstairs? Very cold.

    Dammit, how big is your iguana? What did you name him, and how did you happen to come by an iguana as a pet?!?

    Abbey, that is what they say, now. The poor iguanas! I can hardly imagine a worse way of coping with the cold. Does anyone know whether they would come back to life if they had frozen solid? (Gross question, I know. I wonder about that, though. We are slated for 28 degrees tonight, so I heard. Now, that would freeze an iguana on the ground, right?)

    Nomad, hello there! I will have to go and read your post, next.

  9. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    This is the second iguana we have had. Tony and the boys like them.

    This one is about 3 and a half feet long approximately. Havent measured him lately. His name is Corporal Iggy...lol. We got him from one of Jamie's friends that was shipping out and couldnt take him with him...obviously. About 6 months ago we were able to find him a 5 foot long aquarium to live in. The one before that was only about 3 foot long. He had really outgrown that one but now he is happy as a clam.

    He is pretty ok for a pet. Im not much into reptiles. I will feed him and stuff but I dont play with him.
  10. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    What, do tell, do iguanas "play", anyway????

  11. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    Keep in mind I am 40 year member of the ASPCA....but....:tongue:

    If you throw a frozen iguana......do you call it......(snort)

    A torpid-o?
  12. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    It has been cold for over a week and the description of Floridians having a hard time coping is valid. The effect on the wildlife has already been severe with fish, turtles, gators etc. having major problems.

    Our boxer Ace doesn't stay outside for more than five or ten minutes and then is at the door. We usually have alot of birds and at least five or six squirrels to watch from the porch. (Yes, there is a point to this, lol.) Ace chases the squirrels religiously and those nimble things jump from the fence to trees and escape. This morning he found a vulnerable squirrel. We are assuming that it was near death due to the cold. Ace got him. :sick: Then it was H to pay trying to get him to "drop it". easy child/difficult child got out of bed and
    we brought the cookie jar to entice him. Thank heavens for cookies. The poor squirrel family must be hiding somewhere hoping to keep warm. What a bummer! husband keeps a bag of shelled nuts for them but we don't know where they are hiding. :(

    by the way, bears are not uncommon in our County. There has been so much development in the past ten years that their natural habitat is altered. I wouldn't discount that your husband may have a valid point. DDD
  13. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    Holy Cow!

    Thank you Scent of Cedar, Going North and everyone.

    This morning I went somewhere and there was this GIANT iguana laying under a tree....you would SWEAR it was DEAD. It was brown...stiff, no movement....not even an teeny tiny bit. I remembered this thread!

    Poor thing. It was about 30 degrees outside. It was in another world of some kind....kinda creepy.
  14. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    There are a very few types of Arctic fish and crawlies that can survive extreme cold. They have a sort of antifreeze mixed in the blood that protects cell walls.

    Otherwise, true freezing breaks down cell walls due to water crystals forming in the cells.

    A LOT of snakes can hibernate, which for them is extreme torpidity. Metabolism slows to nearly a standstill.

    Alligators are more cold tolerant due to their physiology, but they cannot survive freezing conditions for any length of time either.