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More than the mercury might be falling in Florida on Christmas Day

People in South Florida are being warned to watch for falling iguanas.
Credit: Courtesy: Westminster Police
Photo of an iguana that had escaped its enclosure in Westminster this summer.

MIAMI — Checklist for Floridians when a cold snap* sweeps through the state:

  • heavy jacket/sweater
  • knit cap
  • pants, instead of shorts
  • watch for iguanas falling out of trees

"Wait, what?!" is what many are probably thinking when they read that last item, but it's true.

Iguanas fall from trees in southern Florida when the temperatures get cold.

Because iguanas are cold-blooded reptiles, their bodies go dormant when it gets too cold for them to handle. They become sluggish when temperatures go below 50 degrees. Below 40 degrees and they become "cold-stunned" and drop to the ground.

Not to worry, they're still alive.

The National Weather Service in Miami tweeted an alert for people in South Florida to watch their heads for the falling green beasts. Male iguanas can grow to be about 5 feet long and weigh up to 17 pounds, according to the Florida Fish & Wildlife.

#Florida, amirite?**

*A cold snap in Florida is a heckuva lot different than here in Colorado. When Floridians say cold snap, that means the high temps will be under 65 with lows in the 30s/40s.

**The author of this article is originally from Florida. Fortunately, he escaped in 2005.