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Fliers in Palm Beach County community warn of invasive Nile monitor lizards

Posted at 10:51 AM, Jun 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-07 20:04:32-04

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A Palm Beach County community is being warned about invasive and potentially dangerous Nile monitor lizards.

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Fliers are being placed on front doors in Lake Clarke Shores, urging people to contact wildlife officials if they spot the large reptiles around their homes.

According to the fliers, the Nile monitor is:

  • Large (3-5 feet in length) invasive lizard from Africa
  • Dark in color with greenish-yellow markings
  • Forked black/blue tongue
  • Most likely to be seen in wetlands or along canal banks
  • Have long sharp claws, a powerful bite, and a long, muscular, whipping tail
  • Opportunistic hunters and scavengers

The fliers tell residents that if they spot a Nile monitor, call the Invasive Species Hotline at 1-888-IVE-GOT1, or report it online by clicking here.

It's unclear if there have been an increase in Nile monitor sightings in Lake Clarke Shores, or any incidents involving the reptiles.

Busch Wildlife Sanctuary in Jupiter said the lizards are often attracted to hibiscus flowers, so wildlife experts caution you against planting them.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission posted this warning on its website:

"Do not attempt to capture Nile monitors. Nile monitors have sharp teeth, strong jaws and sharp claws and, as with any wild animal, will defend themselves if aggravated or threatened."

To learn more about Nile monitor lizards, click here.