|Scientific Name||Iguana Iguana|
|Top Speed||35km/h (21mph)|
|Colour||Green, Brown, Yellow|
|Habitat||Lowland tropical rainforest near water|
|Average Litter Size||3|
|Main Prey||Insects, Fruit, Leaves|
|Predators||Hawk, Eagle, Snakes|
|Special Features||Long tongue and change skin colour with mood|
Map of South America
IguanaIguanas 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 predator 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 of 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 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 choose 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.