Tuesday, March 04, 2008

It all depends on your point of view

You'll either think this is cool or gross. I thought it was a little of both. Anyway, here's something interesting about iguanas: They can drop their tails in order to escape like other small lizards (geckos, for example) when something grabs them by the tail.

How I know this is that Numi the Insane actually managed to catch an iguana by the tail (and how she did it, I have no idea, because those suckers are fast), which the iguana promptly disposed of and then took off without. Esposo looked out to see Numi on the porch playing with the iguana's tail. It was a good 8-10 inches long, and we went out there to get it from her. The muscles (I'm assuming they were muscles; biology was never my strong subject as I refused to dissect anything) looked like fingers protruding from either side of the tail, and there was very little blood at all, so I suppose the iguana has some mechanism to also shut off the blood flow in order to not die from blood loss. Now, the weird thing was that son, being such a boy that he is, wanted to see the tail and touch it. When you touched the tail down toward the tip, it moved in reaction to the touch. Very strange. As if the tail itself was alive. Once we were done playing with the iguana tail, we tossed it over the fence into the coffee field below.

Now I'm on the lookout for Stumpy the Iguana, who must be rather large to have had such a long tail. Haven't seen him/her yet, though.



  1. That is a little gross. When I was little I use to hang lizards from my ears like earrings. Needless to say I do not do that anymore. I was just reading up on some Costa Rican sites to visit over at this Costa Rica HQ travel blog. They didn't talk about iguanas. There should be a whole post on animals you will see in CR. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Oh I love the image of hanging lizards from one's ears! I used to keep a couple of small blue bellied lizards as pets in California; I thought they were wonderful. We have a LOT of iguanas living around our house here in Grecia; I just love seeing them climbing on the roof or coming out of the gutters in the street to take some sun.

  3. Poor Stumpy the Iguana..
    Now I remember you lizards (aka torture for your kitty boys) Louis and Lestat right????

  4. Yep, my little vampire lizards... hee hee...

    I actually saw Stumpy a little while ago, and he/she looks fine. I was worried when I read that iguanas can get a tail infection from losing it. Stumpy is one of the ones that hangs out in the gutters and suns himself/herself in the middle of the street. Luckily they are 1) fast and 2) we live at the end of a dead end street! I tried to get a pic of Stumpy but he/she took off as soon as she/he saw me.