Throughout Florida, the invasive iguana species can be found, and there has been an ever-increasing iguana population over the last several years. This iguana boom has led businesses and homeowners to face increased iguana removal costs. This leads to the question- who is responsible for paying for iguana removal in Florida, and how much does iguana removal cost?
While there is no definitive answer to this burning question, the expenses to remove iguanas can depend on the number and size of the iguanas and the property’s location. Some common methods for paying for iguana removal include homeowners insurance, property owner payment, or government funding. No matter who has to front the cost, iguana removal is important for the health and safety of your property and family.
Iguana Control is an iguana removal company that services businesses and homeowners throughout Florida for all of their iguana trapping, removing, and repelling needs. We provide extensive experience in locating the source of the infestation and offer viable solutions. Let our team of professionals help you get rid of the pesky iguanas on your property.
Why the Need for Removal?
Iguanas can be very damaging to Florida properties. They dig deep tunnels that can cause erosion and the collapse of seawalls, sidewalks, and foundations of Florida homes. Iguanas can also wreak havoc on plants, trees, and vegetable gardens.
Since iguanas can be found just about anywhere, their droppings can be seen on porches, sidewalks, decks, patios, and swimming pools. Iguana feces can be dangerous for humans, animals, and endangered species. Iguanas can transmit salmonella through their droppings, so contact of any kind can pose potential dangers, especially to young children and the elderly.
Iguanas are an invasive species that disrupt the native flora and fauna of the Florida ecosystem. Iguanas compete with Florida’s native species for space and food, consuming vegetation such as leaves, fruits, and flowers, affecting the natural food chain. Economic and agricultural damage occurs when iguanas destroy landscaping and farming communities.
Factors Involved in Iguana Removal Costs
There is no one-size-fits-all answer for the cost of removing iguanas from your property. On average, property owners can expect to pay several hundred to thousands of dollars for a complete iguana removal. Several factors must be considered when assessing cost:
The Iguana Professionals You Hire
You have two choices for iguana removal: companies that provide general pest control and iguana removal specialists. The cost for the latter is generally higher because they specialize in their field. Iguana specialists can safely remove iguanas from your entire property and will also provide a personalized prevention and treatment plan.
Iguana technicians must thoroughly inspect every nook and cranny of the property so the bigger your property is, the more it will cost you for removal. If there is space under your home, the technicians will need to go and inspect the area. This inspection will likely cost you more.
The Number Of Iguanas That Need Removing
In most cases, the specialist will inspect your home to determine the invasion level of your property. Typically, the more iguanas that need to be removed, the higher the price tag will be. This cost is due to the time it takes for proper planning and the time and effort on the specialist’s part.
The Types of Iguana
The different forms of iguana are eggs, babies, and adults. The removal service needed depends on where the iguana is in its lifecycle. For example, the removal of a clutch of eggs is different from the removal of an adult male iguana.
The Difficulty of Removing the Iguanas
Iguanas are a highly specialized species with unique liability and licensing risks involved. Finding iguanas on a property can be difficult. If the iguana is living in a difficult-to-reach area, the iguana removal fee will be more expensive.
Florida Iguana Regulations
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) spent years battling the invasive iguana problem and has since implemented new regulations. The FWC rates iguanas as a high risk ecologically, economically, and for human health and safety. The FWC has established new rules to prevent the spread of iguanas in Florida.
It is now against Florida law to keep, own, or breed green iguanas, tegus, Burmese pythons, and other invasive and non-native reptiles. Florida homeowners are required to obtain a permit if they intend to transport them in a vehicle, release them into the wild, feed them scraps, or possess them without a permit. In addition to prohibiting the breeding, sale, or owning of a green iguana, the new rules prohibit residents from keeping iguanas in any capacity.
It is important to have a plan for removal if you opt to tackle iguana removal on your own. Iguanas captured on your property must have a plan for humane killing according to Florida’s anti-cruelty laws. Captured iguanas cannot be released to another location or sold for profit.
What is Florida Doing to Get Rid of Iguanas?
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission encourages Florida residents to kill iguanas found on their property. They offer Florida residents training on how to properly do so. The FWC works with local trappers to remove pesky iguanas from public areas.
The state of Florida allows temporary state employees to be compensated for assisting homeowners with iguana removal services. However, the temporary state employees will not remove them, and this burden still falls on the property owner. The state compensates these employees between $18 and $22 per hour for their services.
Florida allows the catching and hunting of invasive iguanas on 22 public lands throughout South Florida year-round without a hunting license or a permit. Florida has provided several legal options for the removal of iguanas. These options help property owners to lawfully and safely remove this invasive species.
Tricks to Deter Iguanas From Your Florida Property
Since iguanas are one of Florida’s most invasive species, Florida residents must work hard to deter and remove iguana from their property. A common removal practice is dispatching an iguana using a firearm but some Florida towns and cities restrict where and when a firearm can be discharged. Iguana may be killed by a firearm only during daylight hours on a private property with landowner permission.
Like all wildlife, iguanas are in a constant search for food. Residents should never feed iguanas scraps from their homes. They should avoid inadvertently feeding them by leaving ripened fruits or pet food outside.
Avoid Attractive Vegetation
Property owners can avoid planting vegetation that attracts iguanas. Iguanas are plant-eating lizards that primarily feed on fruit, flowers, and foliage. You can discourage iguanas by avoiding the following plants:
Use of Cages
While the list of vegetation to avoid is lengthy, property owners still prefer some curb appeal. Gardens and valued plants must remain protected from iguanas. Property owners can use screened enclosures or metal cages to prevent access to the vegetation.
Unlike vegetation that property owners should avoid, there is vegetation that can be resistant to iguanas. Homeowners may still want to protect these plants despite their ability to resist iguanas. These plants include:
- Purple Queen
- Society Garlic
- Silver Buttonwood
Iguanas spend a good amount of their time basking in the sun. Property owners can spray iguanas using a water hose to scare them from the area. Another option is to install a water scarecrow sprinkler that is motion-activated.
Wire Fence Barriers
Iguana are natural diggers. Property owners can install a wire fence barrier along sensitive areas to prevent iguanas from digging. Seawalls, foundations, and sidewalks can benefit from wire fence barriers.
Florida residents can utilize natural and commercial iguana repellent. Natural repellents can be made at home or planted and can include:
- Neem oil spray (this deters green iguanas as well as many other insect pests)
- Spicy pepper spray (iguanas dislike the smell of hot peppers)
- Crushed eggshells (iguanas sense that the eggshells mean the presence of predatory birds)
- Lemon grass plants (iguanas despise the smell and taste of citrus)
Create an Unwelcome Atmosphere
Whenever possible, you want to make iguanas feel unwelcome on your property. Loud noises tend to startle iguanas, causing them to scurry away. Loud noises make your property an unwelcome atmosphere.
Professional Methods of Iguana Removal
Whether you have tried everything you can to remove iguanas on your own or just feel like professional help may be needed, there are several methods utilized by iguana removal companies to stop the reptiles from causing significant damage to your property. The cost of iguana removal depends on which method is used by the iguana removal company.
Trapping is the most popular method of iguana removal in Florida. Several factors go into the cost of trapping iguanas on properties. The removal company will consider the number of traps required to control the population on your property.
Professionals use special metallic cages that make it difficult for iguanas to rip open with their claws or bite through. These cages have small gaps that do not allow iguanas to slip through and are strategically placed where iguanas reside.
Bait, such as vegetables or fruit, must be used to attract iguanas to the cage. Another great option for baiting is flowers since iguanas love them. The cages snap close automatically when the iguana enters.
Professionals can use repeating reptile cages, which allow multiple iguanas to be trapped. These traps are designed to catch between 20 and 25 iguanas. Once trapped, the iguanas are removed by the company.
An iguana removed from the property must be humanely killed, and shooting is the quickest and cheapest way for humane dispatching. Iguana removal professionals are trained to shoot iguanas safely, bearing in mind the surrounding hazards and risks. There have been several reported cases of homeowners shooting iguanas and tragically missing their target, hitting an animal or a person instead.
Professionals can trap iguanas using a catch pole, which is a long metal rod that can be extended to reach iguanas from a safe distance. The catch pole has a wire that can be gently placed around the iguana’s neck that it cannot escape from. Iguanas must then be placed in a trap bag or a cage as they cannot be kept on the pole.
Benefits of Using a Professional Iguana Removal Service
Iguanas can be found all over South Florida on homes, buildings, state parks, and beaches. Some Florida homeowners are comfortable with the removal of iguanas from their property, and others are not. While it may seem tempting to remove invasive iguanas on your own, there are several benefits to using a professional iguana removal service company.
Iguana removal professionals have the experience and knowledge needed to safely and effectively remove all species of iguanas. Removal companies have access to the necessary tools and equipment to complete the job. Professionals have been fully trained in safe, humane removal methods.
In the long run, professional iguana removal services can save you time and money. It can be costly and time-consuming for homeowners to remove iguanas without help. The process can be long and arduous without proper equipment and knowledge of iguana trapping.
Iguana Control Can Help
If your property has been invaded by iguanas, you need the help of the professionals at Iguana Control. Contact us using our online form to discuss your iguana control needs.