Rhinoceros Iguana – Cyclura cornuta
Today we are off again to discover new and amazing animals. Today last week, we visited Kenya and today we are going to Hispaniola. Hispaniola is one of a few islands in the Caribbean that are home to the Rhinoceros Iguana. We are traveling some 7,441 miles this time around. The Rhinoceros iguana is an endangered species in it native lands. These lizards can reach 3 ¼ feet to 4 feet. They are oviparous so the babies hatch from an egg outside of the mother's body. Rhinoceros iguanas are terrestrial. They get their names for the horns that are located on the snout. You see some in the picture that hopefully will accompany this post. They feed on leaves and fruit. When threatened, this animal can run fast, lash out with its tail, and bite. You do not want to get bit by these animals. I have read of 3 times where iguanas are known to have taken off someone's finger. Now, that being said, iguanas make great pets. Male iguanas are larger than the females. Females lay 2 to 20 eggs in a burrow. They are active by day. Their teeth are designed for chewing up leaves. Their teeth are also quite sharp. Hierarchy among males is done by the size of the dewlap, the flap of skin under their necks. Males display their dewlap during courtship.
I know I talk about this a lot but I want to talk about it again. I really want to stress this because I don't think it can be said enough. Reptile keepers as well as keepers of other exotic animals see their hobby come under fire any time that there is an escape, where the animals are seized by police, or when someone is injured or killed by a pet. Please ensure that your tanks are secure after having the tank open or cage open. Do everything you can to ensure that you're animal cannot escape from its cage. Make sure your animal is legal in the area that you live. Keep in mind that there are animals that can spread Salmonella so always wash your hands after handling any animal. Avoid wild caught specimens if at all possible. That is all I have say for today!
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