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What Kind of Damage Do Iguanas Do?

Homeowners tend to be concerned about iguanas on their property and the damage these animals might cause. And iguanas have certainly earned their reputation by digging burrows that may cause sidewalks and seawalls to collapse and damage foundations and roofs, among many other disasters. When it comes to the environment, iguanas can wreak havoc with it while eating great amounts of decorative plants, foliage, and vegetable gardens. If you are dealing with iguanas on your property, it’s best to call professional iguana removal services to come and help you find a solution to this problem since it seems as though the iguana population has exploded in recent years.

What health risks do iguanas pose?

Desperate homeowners who are intent on keeping their landscaping intact may lose patience whenever they catch iguanas feasting on their flowers, shrubbery, and other plants. They may lift these creatures with their bare hands to relocate them to a different spot. When they do this, they run the risk of getting salmonella which is carried by iguanas and can be transferred to humans by any contact or their droppings. This illness brings fever, debilitating diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea. Should you come in contact with one or their fecal matter, wash and sanitize your hands thoroughly.

What other damage do iguanas cause?

Injuries to People

When iguanas decide to catch some sun on patios, decks, seawalls, or sidewalks, they may get in the way of pedestrians passing by. When iguanas feel threatened, they may lash out by biting, scratching, or causing injuries with their sharp and powerful tails.

Damage to Property

If iguanas decide to burrow along seawalls or underneath sidewalks, they may cause these structures to collapse. They may also burrow under foundations, causing great damage to the stability of the home. In some cases, when iguanas can climb tall trees that may have branches that reach a property’s roof, they may also burrow inside the roof, causing thousands of dollars of damage to the home.

Damage to Canals

Iguanas can dig tunnels into the sides of canals. These waterways control water runoff that can prevent flooding during major weather events, such as thunderstorms and hurricanes. If iguanas cause the erosion of these waterways and runoff channels, they will also affect all adjacent property, causing thousands of dollars in damage to surrounding homes and their infrastructure.

Is there anything a homeowner can do to prevent an iguana infestation on their property?

A good way to start is by making your property unattractive for iguanas. If you plant toxic plants such as milkweed around your property, iguanas will not get hurt because they are smart enough to know not to eat this, but they will stay away from your property and look for another place where they may more easily eat the vegetation they enjoy.

Also, if you have fruit trees in your backyard, get in the habit of picking up any fruit that falls to the ground. Iguanas are attracted by the scent of rotting fruit such as mangos and will try to get into your yard.

If you have tall trees with wide branches, keep them trimmed. When tree branches touch other plants, it is as though you have built a superhighway for them to move from section to section in your backyard. And if, as mentioned above, they touch your roof, you have given them access to a large area where they can comfortably burrow and have their babies. If all your attempts at controlling them fail, call a professional to help you with this bothersome issue.

By ML Staff. Image courtesy of Unsplash


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