Snake park to play host to green iguana

Chennaiites can now see a green iguana at close range from May 1.

Chennai: Chennaiites can now see a green iguana at close range from May 1. The gigantic lizard native to Amazon forests of South America has been brought to the Chennai snake park, park director Rajarathinam told reporters on Saturday. These lizards usually live high up in trees in Amazonian rainforests and will be a visual delight of the public, particularly the kids thronging the snake park during summer holidays.

The green iguana is a lizard native to Central and South America. They grow up to 6 feet long and 10 kg, of which half is their tail. The green iguanas eat plants including leaves and fruit, but also insects, eggs and other animal matter especially when young. Iguanas will use the sharp teeth together with their long claws and muscular tail to attack if they feel threatened. Iguanas have spines along their backs to help protect them from predators, the herpetologist said.

According to park sources Iguanas have a good life span up to 8 years in the wild and even 20 years in proper captivity. The green iguanas can cost up to '1 lakh per individual. These lizards were procured under a CSR activity funded by Kaleesuwari Refineries, sources added. It may be noted that Chennai is now also a home to Komodo dragons. The dragons now under quarantine at the Madras Crocodile Bank are ready for public display this summer season.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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