According to a recent article in the New York Times, biologists in Florida consider the tegu to be the “most troublesome invasive species in the Everglades.” The lizards arrived in Florida through the pet trade. The tegus in the Everglades are descended from released or escaped pets.
The National Reptile Breeders’ Expo concluded on Sunday in Daytona Beach. It’s one of the largest reptile industry shows in the country. Many of the vendors at the show, including Snakes at Sunset (Miami) and Underground Reptiles (Deerfield Beach), offer tegus for sale.
The Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is negligent in allowing the breeding and sale of tegus.
You Can Help
It is illegal to buy or sell Burmese pythons as pets in Florida. The FWC has proposed a ban on the breeding of lionfish, another animal of concern (it is already prohibited to import lionfish into Florida). Please ask the FWC to also act to stop the breeding and sale of tegus as pets in Florida.
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
Online comment form.