In those cases, residents “that trap iguanas on their property may be able to obtain euthanasia services from local exotic veterinarians, humane societies or animal control offices depending on the location and availability of services,” the FWC wrote in its statement, adding that captured green iguanas “cannot be relocated and released at other locations in Florida.
To tackle the spread of green iguanas, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is now encouraging residents to kill the animals on their own property, as well as 22 areas of public land.
With the spread of green iguanas spiraling out of control in Florida, the state’s wildlife agency is urging homeowners to take it upon themselves to exterminate the non-native lizard, and without the need for permits.
They can also carry and spread disease. “Homeowners do not need a permit to kill iguanas on their own property, and the FWC encourages homeowners to kill green iguanas on their own property whenever possible,” the agency noted in a statement.
That said, Florida wildlife officials have been exterminating green iguanas themselves by smashing in their skulls, or by using bolt guns similar to those employed in the livestock industry.
To deter iguanas from encroaching on their property, residents are being asked to “humanely harass” the animals, spray them with water, remove their preferred plants from gardens, fill in holes, and hang wind chimes (an acoustic deterrent) and CDs (a bright visual deterrent).
Map of Florida with sightings indicated by number. “Females dig egg chambers that may contain nearly 80 feet of interconnected tunnels and multiple entrances and lay clutches of anywhere from 14-76 eggs,” noted the FWC. “Green iguanas can live up to 10 years in the wild and 19 years in captivity.
No suggestions were offered as to how homeowners were supposed to kill the lizards, aside from saying green iguanas are not a protected species, though they are protected by anti-cruelty laws.