Look out for falling iguanas as temperatures drop

By Kasha Patel
The Washington Post
December 22, 2022
Category: Health & Safety
Region: United States, US East

FLORIDA — Watch out for falling iguanas in South Florida this Christmas. Seriously. This week, a massive storm system is forecast to bring Arctic cold to the Lower 48. Nearly 70 million people are under winter storm watches or warnings in the Midwest, Great Lakes and Appalachians.  The frigid air is also expected to immobilize coldblooded animals. Iguanas sleeping in trees may lose their grip and drop to the ground. Sea turtles may stun and blow ashore from Texas to New England. “You change the environment, and the organisms that are going to feel it first and hardest are the ectotherms [coldblooded animals] because their entire fitness is thermally dependent,” said Martha Muñoz, at Yale University. This weekend, much of Florida is expected to dip into the 30s. Most lizards in Miami find it too cold to move once air temperatures dip below about 45 degrees Fahrenheit.

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