The National Weather Service has issued an unofficial warning for falling iguanas due to the unusual cold snap that’s hit the Sunshine State of Florida.
“This isn’t something we usually forecast, but don’t be surprised if you see Iguanas falling from the trees tonight as lows drop into the 30s and 40s,” the weather service tweeted. “Brrr!”
“Iguanas are cold blooded. They slow down or become immobile when temps drop into the 40s. They may fall from trees, but they are not dead,” the weather service said.
Once temperatures reach a certain level, iguanas stiffen up and fall out of trees.
“It’s when the temperature drops to about 40 degrees or lower that their blood doesn’t move around as quickly. As a result, they can stiffen up and fall out of the trees in which they frequent.”
“Don’t assume that they’re dead.”
Green iguanas are an invasive species in Florida known for eating through landscaping and digging burrows that undermine infrastructure.
A two-week cold snap with temperatures below 40 degrees in 2010 killed off many iguanas, along with Burmese pythons and other invasive pests that thrive in South Florida’s subtropical climate.
This week’s cold snap should be short-lived, the weather service said, as temperatures are forecast to rebound into the mid-70s for highs in Miami by Thursday.