Florida’s cold snap means iguanas are falling out of trees and pythons are burrowing underground

by Joey deVilla on January 4, 2018

The “bomb cyclone” hitting the northeast United States and eastern Canada has brought some unseasonably cold temperatures, and with it, some unusual responses from Florida wildlife. It’s so cold here that iguanas are falling from trees.

(At least it’s a change from their other unusual behavior: popping up in toilets.)

Being cold-blooded creatures, they “shut down” when the temperature drops below a certain threshold. As a result, they fall out of trees, as shown in the photo above, and sometimes onto people’s windshields, as shown in the video below:

A number of turtles have also “shut down” due to the cold.

Despite their appearance, these fallen iguanas and immobilzied turtles probably aren’t dead. They’re just in the reptile equivalent of “power saving mode” and will return to normal as soon as it warms up. If you see one, just leave it alone.

The Tampa Bay Times has asked if the cold snap will have the beneficial effect of killing off Florida’s pythons. They’re an invasive species, and it’s been hoped that the cold will reduce their numbers. Unfortunately, they know how to burrow underground, and will likely survive.

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