Cold weather could bring frozen iguanas Tuesday morning

South Florida could see coldest night of 2022
Posted at 3:27 PM, Jan 17, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-17 15:27:15-05

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — South Florida will see some of the coldest temperatures of the season Tuesday morning, bringing a phenomenon that few states have the pleasure of experiencing.

That's right, frozen iguanas.

Overnight and morning temperatures are expected to be in the 40s and possibly in the 30s in some inland locations, which means you have to be on the lookout for cold-stunned iguanas falling from trees.

In previous years, this has typically been the range of temperatures that hamper the movement of the normally fleet-of-foot critters.

The reptiles, which aren't native to Florida, don't self-regulate their body temperature, and prolonged cold weather can kill the animals.

"They're kind of stuck in place like the tin man. They can't move," said Emily Maple of the Palm Beach Zoo told WPTV in 2020. "They'll slow their breathing down very slow and [in] some cases they'll fall out of trees."

Since the iguanas are immobile during cold weather, many people think they are dead. However, many will become revived once temperatures increase, and they can warm in the sun.

The National Weather Service in Miami has not issued a "frozen-iguana" advisory like in 2020, so we'll see if the cold temperatures produce this unusual event Tuesday morning.

Below are pictures of frozen iguanas after a South Florida cold snap in January 2020: