To listen to this article, please select Control + Shift + Z to launch the pop-up player.

Browser out-of-date!

You are using an out-of-date web browser, to avoid problems when using A-Z Animals and other sites we strongly recommend you upgrade to the latest version of your web browser!
Get Firefox Get Google Chrome Get Opera Get Microsoft Internet Explorer Get Apple Safari
Remove Advertising
A-Z Animals - Animal Facts, Images and Resources A-Z Animals - Animal Facts, Images and Resources A-Z Animals - Animal Facts, Images and Resources

Animals >>

Iguana


 Add to Phobia Filter  Contribute  Print  Listen
Adult male iguana (Iguana iguana) in Morikami Gardens, Delray Beach, Florida
Iguana at Colchester Zoo
Colchester Zoo
Colchester Zoo
Iguana, Bogazici Zoo
Iguanas are native to the jungles of central and south America, and the Caribbean. The iguana is a large docile species of lizard, meaning that iguanas are often a popular choice when keeping exotic pets.

Iguanas have excellent sight allowing the iguana to detect movement from incredibly long distances. The iguana can use this skill to seek out prey and be aware of approaching predators often before the predators has even noticed the iguana.

It is said that the iguana uses visual signals to communicate with other iguanas. The iguanas do this through a series a rapid eye movements that other iguanas are able to pick up on easily due to the excellent sight of the iguana.

Green Iguanas are forest dwelling lizards that live high in the tree canopy of the South American rainforest. Young iguanas get to grips with tree top living by staying in areas lower in the canopies while older mature adult iguanas reside higher up in the tree tops. This tree dwelling habit allows the iguana to bask in the sun, with little need to go down to the forest floor below. The only real exception to this is when the female iguanas must come down from their sky high home in order to dig burrows in which the female iguanas lay their eggs.

Although iguanas tend to prefer the forest environment, iguanas can adjust well to a more open areas. However, wherever the iguanas inhabit, iguanas prefer to have water around them as iguanas are excellent swimmers and will often dive beneath the water to avoid oncoming predators.

Although iguanas are classed as omnivores, most iguana individuals in the wild, tend to enjoy a very herbivorous diet, with ripened fruit being one of the iguanas favourite foods along with leafy green plants. Most mature adult iguanas weigh around 4 kg, but it is not uncommon for large, healthy iguanas where food is in good supply, to weigh up to 8 kg and grow to over 2 meters in length.

Due to the natural green and brown colours of the scales of the iguana, iguanas are easily able to make themselves invisible to predators. Iguanas do this well as the iguana blends extremely effectively into the surrounding forest and the iguana will then remain extremely still until the predator has passed. Iguanas will often chose basking spots on those tree branches that hang over water so that if the iguana does feel threated, the iguana can leap from the tree into the water and therefore the iguana can quickly escape oncoming danger.


Iguana Comments (26)

Denver William Hallman

"This article was great . It just needs a little more information about the iguanas in other areas . This article made me get a new green friend"

Lily

"Iguanas are a bit scary-looking but they are really interesting"

angelica

"they suck because they dont change color"

Showing 3 of 26 comments.

Show More Comments

Post Comment

Your Name:

Article Rating:

Your Comment:


Article Tools

Print Article
View printer friendly version of Iguana article.
 
Listen to Article
Listen to audio version of Iguana article. Hot key: CTRL key + Shift key + Z key

Iguana Facts

Kingdom:
Five groups that classify all living things...
Animalia
Phylum:
A group of animals within the animal kingdom...
Chordata
Class:
A group of animals within a pylum...
Reptilia
Order:
A group of animals within a class...
Squamata
Family:
A group of animals within an order...
Iguanidae
Genus:
A group of animals within a family...
Iguana
Scientific Name:
Comprised of the genus followed by the species...
Iguana Iguana
Type:
The animal group that the species belongs to...
Reptile
Diet:
What kind of foods the animal eats...
Omnivore
Size:
How long (L) or tall (H) the animal is...
0.91-1.83m (3-6ft)
Weight:
The measurement of how heavy the animal is...
4-8kg (8.8-17.6lbs)
Top Speed:
The fastest recorded speed of the animal...
35km/h (21mph)
Life Span:
How long the animal lives for...
15-20 years
Lifestyle:
Whether the animal is solitary or sociable...
Solitary
Conservation Status:
The likelihood of the animal becoming extinct...
Threatened
Colour:
The colour of the animal's coat or markings...
Green, Brown, Yellow
Skin Type:
The protective layer of the animal...
Scales
Favourite Food:Insects
Habitat:
The specific area where the animal lives...
Lowland tropical rainforest near water
Average Litter Size:
The average number of babies born at once...
3
Main Prey:
The food that the animal gains energy from...
Insects, Fruit, Leaves
Predators:
Other animals that hunt and eat the animal...
Hawk, Eagle, Snakes
Special Features:Long tongue and change skin colour with mood

Related Animals

GeckoGecko
There are thought to be over 2,000 species!
Komodo DragonKomodo Dragon
Only found on five Indonesian islands!
LizardLizard
There are around 5,000 different species!
Monitor LizardMonitor Lizard
Some species are thought to carry a weak venom!
Thorny DevilThorny Devil
Found only on mainland Australia!
ChameleonChameleon
There are more than 160 different species!
Gila MonsterGila Monster
It's tail acts as a fat storage facility!