10.18.2004 - I made a special trip to southern FL and was treated to some iguana removal jobs with a friend of mine. Fort Lauderdale is swimming with iguanas! They infest the docks, canals and waterways! They infest the trees! They're coming out of the sewers!
Marching in giant packs across our fields! Slithering across our highways! Invading our libraries and schools! Eating all of our crops! Scaling the roof of your home! Coming up through your toilet!
Eating your children in the night! Well, these are exaggerations. They are merely nibbling at your children in the night. Still, there are iguanas in Fort Lauderdale. My friend catches them from time to time. For example, he caught one today. There it is. In the above photo.
Looking smart. This
iguana was just sitting in the customer's yard, not moving much. It was healthy and all, just lazy, I suppose. We snared it and boxed it and brought it to the Fort Lauderdale Herpetalogical Society. The fact is that this is a relatively common catch. I get a whole lot of iguana calls, and
have become an expert in their removal. They are far more common in southern Florida than in Orlando, where I work.
It's not like there's an iguana problem or infestation in north or central Florida. Most likely the few that I get up here are merely released pets. I don't believe that they've established any sort of permanent self-sustaining population base here in Orlando, but Fort Lauderdale is a
different story. They're out there. In the night. Waiting.
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Florida is increasingly becoming the home of the exotic lizards, so much so they have been regarded as a menace, especially in Fort Lauderdale. Iguana control involves several measures and processes which we discuss in this article.
Exclusion includes all measures of making your property unappealing to the exotic creatures. Exclusion measures for iguana control include those that limit their access to your yard, pool, and even limit the reptiles from climbing trees on your property. For your yard and pool, you can install caged screen enclosures. Electric fencing is also effective for excluding them from yards as well as docks and seawalls. Wire net meshing can serve as an effective barrier in areas such as garden to protect your garden plants. To prevent the exotic reptiles from climbing trees on your property, apply sheet metal guards.
Trapping is acceptable in Florida as long as it is limited to the use of snares and live traps. However, the trap should be checked frequently, in intervals of at most 24 hours. Also, it is illegal to release trapped iguanas. Instead, they should be kept as pets or euthanized. An acceptable way of euthanizing iguanas is with deep freezers. When trapping iguanas, the use of the right trap and bait as well as the proper placement of the trap play critical roles. Iguana traps are best placed on regular pathways of the reptiles so that they can encounter the trap on their routine activities.
If iguanas are visiting your garden, you can apply habit modification as a control measure. Habit modification as an iguana control measure involves the filling of burrows with cement and sand. You should also trim bushes and trees around your property to discourage the activity of the reptiles. You also want to remove flowering plants and fruit trees from your garden to make it unappealing.
Iguana repellents are a part of the overall process of keeping your property and environment iguana-free. Suitable repellents for iguanas include neem oil and garlic spray that is known as nontoxic biopesticides. Nontoxic biopesticides work because of their unpleasant smell and taste. They are sprayed on vegetation. Since iguanas hate the smell and taste of these repellents, they will stay away from areas where they are applied. It is noteworthy that iguana repellents are temporary control measures.
Interrupting the breeding of iguanas by destroying their eggs can also help with their control. However, finding the eggs of these exotic reptiles is uncommon as the female lays them in secluded burrows. When you find iguana eggs, you can halt the development by freezing them. You can also destroy burrows by filling them. Avoid filing an occupied burrow as it is inhumane.
Iguana control in Fort Lauderdale involves a series of temporary and permanent processes to reduce the population of the exotic reptiles. It is important that all measures are in line with existing regulations and executed humanely. One can also engage the services of iguana control professionals.