Fun Iguana Facts

It's good to know some iguana facts before you bring one home as a pet. There's a lot that people still don't know about the land iguana, which makes them fascinating to own, if you're able to provide the attention that they need. Green iguanas are the species most often kept as pets. There are many different iguana species, and new ones keep turning up in remote parts of the world, such as the pink Galapagos Iguana.

Size 

  • Iguanas can be as small as 14 inches and as large as 7 feet. Green iguanas sold as pets will be six to seven feet long as adults.
  • Iguanas weigh up to 18 pounds.
  • Pet iguanas will need a cage that is at least 6 feet high, 12 feet wide and 12 feet deep.

Behavior

  • Adult male iguanas can become very aggressive during breeding season.
  • Breeding season lasts about three months.
  • Female iguanas usually produce eggs, even if there is not a male around.
  • Iguanas need to be handled every day to keep tame.

Food

  • Green iguanas are strict vegetarians. They do not eat, nor should they be fed, any animal protein. Some wild species do eat insects, however.
  • Rhubarb is poisonous to iguanas.
  • Iguanas love a variety of fruits and greens, including squash, strawberries, melons, green beans, peppers and watercress. 

Living Area and Needs

  • Iguanas must have ultraviolet light in their cages. Without it, they can't digest properly.
  • An area of the cage must be kept at 95 degrees Fahrenheit, also to help with digestion. The rest of the iguana's habitat should be 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • You may need to encourage your iguana to drink. You can do this by putting a small piece of food in its water bowl.
  • The iguana should have a separate bowl of water to bathe in. Iguanas prefer to eliminate in the water, so the second bowl should be big enough for the iguana to submerse itself.
  • Iguanas like to put things in their mouths, just like children. The chips at the bottom of the cage should be separated from the iguana by a screen that is an inch or two above the chips.

Dangers

  • Iguanas have sharp teeth and claws. They will use them to defend themselves.
  • Iguanas have sharp spines on their tails. The spines can slice your skin open easily. Iguanas should be kept away from children, especially after they grow to more than one foot in length.
  • Iguanas are clever and will find ways to escape their cages. Be sure that the cage is secured at all times. 
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Where do iguanas live? While they need warm temperatures, these clever creatures have adapted to live on land, near the sea and in the desert.

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