As iguana removal experts in South Florida, we’ve heard a lot of wild tips from homeowners about getting rid of iguanas. To keep you from wasting time and resources, we’re here to walk you through the basics about what works – and what doesn’t – when it comes to green iguana removal.
What Damage Are Iguanas Doing In Florida?
Since the 1960s, exotic pet owners have released a range of animals into the Floridian ecosystem. Green iguanas are an invasive species without natural predators, meaning they’re a threat to native wildlife.
Iguanas are destroying the delicate balance of Florida’s ecosystem and their massive numbers have begun to upset the ecosystem as they increase their range into more northern regions.
Iguanas feed on a wide variety of plants, causing massive damage to gardens and farms. They also spread disease through direct contact with humans, particularly salmonella and malaria-like illnesses from their feces or contact with their saliva.
What Is The Best Ways To Get Rid of Iguanas?
An air rifle is the best way to eliminate iguanas from your property. This method is quick and inexpensive. In areas where we cannot use an air rifle the second best way is to use an iguana catch pole, which allows you to capture the animals alive and relocate them.
We do not recommend using poisons or toxins to kill iguana because you may accidentally poison other animals.
Best Way to Prevent Green Iguanas
If you notice multiple iguanas on your property, there are a few effective ways to reduce their numbers:
- Restricting access to and removing plants they enjoy:
- Ornamental flowers (e.g. jasmine, orchids, hibiscus, roses)
- Leafy greens
- Vines (e.g. princess, bougainvillea)
- Fan palms
- Vegetables (e.g. squash, tomatoes, kale)
- Fruit (e.g. raspberries, strawberries, figs)
- Planting strong-smelling plants like eucalyptus and peppermint.
- Keeping your property free of clutter and overgrowth.
- Filling in holes that you spot around your property (though be sure to check for other signs of wildlife first).
- Placing metal guards around tree bases to restrict climbing
- Adding wire netting around bushes and shrubs.
- Placing items with reflective surfaces (e.g. mirrors, CDs). around your property
- Properly sealing and regularly emptying garbage and recycling containers.
- Filling holes on your buildings with foam or wire mesh.
Obviously, these tips require bit of work and effort. If your community is experiencing an iguana infestation, it’s important to remember how fast they reproduce (up to 70 eggs per year). To keep green iguanas from multiplying on your property, you’ll need to consider more serious measures.
How To Trap Iguanas
If you choose to trap an iguana, we recommend using a “catch and release” metal trap with small slats. This will ensure that the animal won’t be able to bite or tear it open. Place hibiscuses, orchids, fruits, or vegetables in the back of the cage and wait!
You can also create an iguana snare or use a catch pole, but it’s best for a professional to handle an upset reptile (since iguanas can bite).
Can You Kill Iguanas In Florida?
According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, property owners are encouraged to kill green iguanas throughout the year. Landowners will need to grant permission before hunting iguanas. However, there are a number of public lands that require no hunting license or permit.
We find that the best way to kill iguanas is with an air gun. It doesn’t require roaming through the bush or trying to handle an enraged lizard at the end of a catch pole.
Note: Don’t Use Poison for Iguanas!
Poison may seem like the simplest way to remove iguanas, but you can’t guarantee that protected wildlife or someone’s pet won’t accidentally ingest it. Poisoning also promotes “unreasonable suffering” and legal action could be made against you.
Should I trap or kill iguanas?
If you manage to trap a few of these nuisances, you can’t release them back into the wild since they’re an invasive species. You’ll need to contact the right authorities to remove (and eventually kill) green iguanas. Otherwise, you’re required to apply for a license to keep them in cages.
Iguana Removal Near You
The easiest way to get rid of iguanas is calling in the experts. With decades of experience, Iguana Trappers eliminates and removes these invasive pests quickly, humanely, and without stress.