There was a voice in my head - the same one that usually goes on about chocolate at 2 a.m. But this time it had a deranged tone. It informed me of something I had known for some time but had not dared to admit, for the shame of bringing it out of my subconscious and exposing it for the world to see.
Iguanas at a zoo in Sweden (Bjoertvedt)
I had made it to I on the A to Z challenge without featuring a single reptile....
Pause as the full horror of those words sinks in. My blood runs cold. Then I move swiftly onto Iguanas.
Actually I like Iguanas. They are funky and come in all shapes, sizes and colors. I would gladly swap a dog that is still hyperactive notwithstanding the strategic removal of certain parts, for one of these cool reptiles which are not scary in the slightest.
The Green Iguana Society informs me: "Because reptiles are vertebrates, they are chordates. Phyla are also divided up into many smaller groups, called classes."
Anyhow. Did I tell you they are funky.
The Iguana is a type of herbivorous lizards that lives in tropical parts of Mexico, Central America and islands such as Fiji and Tonga in the the Pacific as well as the Caribbean. This lounge lizard has impeccable taste and can be found supping cocktails in places such as Martinique.
The genus was first described back in 1768 by Austrian naturalist Josephus Nicolaus Laurenti in his popular best seller Specimen Medicum, Exhibens Synopsin Reptilium Emendatam cum Experimentis circa Venena.
Um OK. The two main types are the Green Iguana and the Lesser Antillean iguana, which is endangered due to the destruction of its habitat.
The Galapagos Islands of South America are known for their distinctive iguanas. Back in the 19th Century naturalist Charles Darwin found so many of them here, he remarked it was impossible to pitch a tent because there were so many iguanas. A distinctive pink morph was identified.
Darwin described the Galapagos land iguana as "ugly animals, of a yellowish orange beneath, and of a brownish-red colour above: from their low facial angle they have a singularly stupid appeararance."
This description makes me wonder whether he was not actually, in fact, making notes in 7-Eleven.
Useless Fact About Iguanas
Some species have a symbiotic relationship with the local bird population; the birds remove parasite and ticks, making life a good deal better of the iguanas and providing a tasty lunch for the birds.
What Not to Say to an Iguana
Can I borrow your scales?