Iguanas are cold-blooded creatures, and they’re native to Central America and South America. The climate in those parts of the world is generally warm, and basically tropical. It’s the perfect place for these cute lizards to thrive. The green iguana species also seems to enjoy Florida, but it’s not natural. They’re an invasive species that’s a massive pest to the area where they’ve been known to eat through plants, dig annoying holes, and leave their salmonella-invested poop wherever they go.
Wherever iguanas may find themselves, however, they have to watch out for cold spells. If the temperature tends to drop below around 50 degrees Fahrenheit, it’s extremely hard on the iguanas: They start to slow down the colder it gets. If it gets really cold, like in the near or below freezing range, it is literally too cold for them to move. Iguanas stuck in a cold spot get stuck in place, wherever they are. It may look like they’re dead, but they’re not—they’re just frozen in time, space, and, for all intents and purposes, body temperature.
Well, the crazy winter weather brought on by Winter Storm Grayson dropped some rare near-freezing temperatures and ice on Florida. Temperatures in some areas dipped below 40 degrees, confusing and discomforting the iguana population. Many of them hide out in trees…which the stunned creatures are now falling out of, freaking out a vast number of Floridians.
— CBS News (@CBSNews) January 4, 2018