In recent years, more than 5,000 green iguana sightings have been reported in Florida. The vast majority are in South Florida.
Wild green iguanas are not native to Florida. The wild first green iguanas were reported in the state in 1966. Experts believe these early invaders stowed away in shipping containers.
Since then, the pet trade has significantly increased their population, as the lizards escape or irresponsible owners intentionally release them.
For Floridians, green iguanas are a nuisance and, more ominously, a threat to endangered native plant species.
It’s important, therefore, for all Florida homeowners to do their part to combat this invasion. Fortunately, you can take several practical steps to keep green iguanas from destroying your property.
How to Keep Iguanas Out of Your Yard
To keep iguanas out of your yard, you need to ensure that your property is not iguana-friendly. This means removing food and waste that attract iguanas and adding elements, like iguana barriers and other landscape design features, to deter them.
Don’t Feed the Green Iguanas!
You’re reading an article about how to get rid of iguanas. So it’s unlikely that you’re intentionally feeding them. You might, though, be leaving a lizard feast without realizing it.
Green iguanas love fruit. They especially love fruit that’s easy to access. Low-hanging fruit on mango and avocado trees offers iguanas a tasty snack with little effort. Fruit that’s fallen to the ground is even better for these lazy lizards.
If green iguanas have been feasting on your fruit trees, it’s time to close up shop.
Clear fallen fruit from your yard and discard it in a secure container. Then gather any low-hanging fruit that’s still on the trees so that you and your family—not some pesky lizards—can enjoy these juicy treats.
As a longer-term solution, you might also plant citrus trees, which may deter iguanas.
Fruit isn’t the only treat that lures iguanas. In fact, iguanas enjoy the leaves and flowers of most plants.
Protect your plants from their destructive appetites with wire netting or cages. Also consider installing plants that iguanas do not eat. These include oleanders and crotons. For a full list of iguana-deterring plants, check out our related blog post: “What Plants Do Iguanas Hate?”
A key advantage of Florida living is the year-round option for patio dining. Whether it’s a cozy sunrise breakfast for two or a large dinner party, never leave food unattended. And when the party’s over, promptly discard or store the leftovers.
Doing so sends a clear message to the green iguanas: You’re not invited.
Pet food can be another unintentional food source for iguanas on your property. Fortunately, the solution is simple: Avoid feeding your pets outside.
If you’re caring for a neighborhood stray, bringing the pet food bowls inside might not be an option. In that case, be sure to monitor the bowl while the animal is feeding. Then promptly remove the dish until the next meal.
Iguanas are largely herbivores. However, they don’t have the most discerning palate. That means they’ll try anything that smells edible and is easy to access. Besides pet food, household trash offers another tantalizing food source for green iguanas.
It’s important, therefore, to put trash in a secure container. Trash bags are no deterrent to a hungry lizard. Even loose lids on trash cans offer little protection.
To iguana-proof your trash, invest in an animal-proof can with a secure lid. Or use a cinder block to keep the lid on and the lizards out.
Maintain Your Yard
In addition to food, shelter is another of the green iguana’s basic needs. Basic yard maintenance and landscaping features can keep your property from becoming an iguana oasis.
Use Tree Wrap
Faced with a natural tree trunk, green iguanas are skillful climbers. This makes trees a prime nesting spot for iguanas. Iguanas also enjoy basking in the sun on a tree’s upper branches.
As a homeowner, it’s your responsibility to cut off access to these lizard motels. You can do this by installing tree wrap to prevent iguanas from climbing.
Working with an expert like Iguana Control ensures effective installation and high-quality tree wrap.
Trim Trees and Shrubs
Trees near your house can also serve as bridges for iguanas to reach your roof and, ultimately, enter your home. Once inside, iguanas can cause leaks and leave unsanitary droppings.
An iguana pest control company, like Iguana Control, will identify and trim problematic branches. If necessary, they’ll also thin out overgrown shrubs and other areas where iguanas can hide.
Fill—and Prevent—Iguana Holes
Iguanas are not just expert climbers but also expert diggers. They dig long tunnels to access your property, and they dig burrows for nesting.
Filling these holes—and installing additional barriers to prevent their return—is one of the best ways to send iguanas packing.
It’s best to fill iguana holes during the day when the lizards are foraging for food or basking in the sun.
It’s also best—and, in fact, necessary—to fill iguana holes with more than dirt. If you fill a hole with dirt, the iguana can easily dig through it to return to its burrow.
Dropping large rocks into the hole before filling it with dirt can add another layer of protection. However, the best solution is Iguana Control’s anti-hole barrier. Hidden beneath a layer of dirt, this barrier prevents the iguana from reentering its burrow.
When you work with Iguana Control, you can also opt for our monitoring and topography protection services. These services provide exceptional vigilance against the appearance of new iguanas and burrows.
Install Iguana Barriers Along Your Property Line
Besides filling iguana holes, you’ll also need to guard the perimeter of your property from new invaders. This might mean installing an iguana-proof fence around your yard.
If you live near water, though, you’ll also need to consider solutions to prevent iguanas from entering via waterways and docks.
Iguana Control’s sea wall barrier is 100% effective at preventing iguanas from crawling from a canal or other waterway onto your property. Meanwhile, dock piling wrap, like our tree wrap, prevents iguanas from using cement or wood pilings to enter your yard.
Consider Iguana Extermination
At Iguana Control, most of our services—over 95%—are preventative. With our iguana trapper services, though, we’re equipped to handle the most stubborn lizard pests as well.
When you work with Iguana Control, iguana removal is an effective and available last resort.
Work with a Green Iguana Pest Control Expert
The above solutions are practical steps you can take to eliminate an iguana infestation. Some of these steps, like securing your trash, rely on you and your vigilance on a daily basis. Still, the most effective iguana pest control strategy involves partnering with the experts.
At Iguana Control, we know Florida, and we know iguanas. We know how to implement the above solutions to effectively eliminate green iguanas from your Florida property.
Contact us today for a free estimate!