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Green Iguana: Reptiles of the Rainforest printer.gif

Green Iguanas are the largest lizards living the Amazon rainforest. They are fairly typical animals that we encounter quite often. Most of the time they can be spotted catching the sun's hot rays from a tree branch that hangs over the river.

Most iguanas live in the rainforests of Central and South America but some come from drier areas and along the ocean's coasts. Young iguanas are a very light green and blend in well with their natural habitat. As they grow older, iguanas become darker and live almost exclusively in the rainforest's trees.

Iguanas are masters of camouflage. Their tail is striped, helping to them blend in with the rainforest. Older iguanas live high up in the trees. All iguanas are excellent climbers. They are amazing to watch as they quickly scurry from branch to branch. They are also great swimmers.

Green iguanas have good senses of hearing and smell, and unbelievable eyesight. Their eyesight is their best defense against predators.

Their long tail is spiky and sharp. Green iguanas can snap their tails like a whip in case a predator gets too close. The tail can also break off if caught by a predator without harming the iguana. Amazingly, the tail grows back. Green iguana skin is well-suited to the rainforest's wet environment. It is very water resistant, and tough for protecting against cuts and scratches that an iguana might get while climbing.

For further exploration of green iguanas, check out these web sites.

Wilderness Classroom's Rainforest Library: Iguanas

National Geographic's Animals Photos and Facts

The Belieze Zoo Animal Facts: Iguanas

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