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Ctenosaura Palearis/Guatemalan Spiny-tailed Iguana Help

Discussion in 'Ctenosaura - Spiny Tail Iguana' started by coz1134, Nov 16, 2013.

  1. coz1134

    coz1134 Member

    My friend's boyfriend recently bought one of these little guys from our lps after his monitor died.
    He was good to it at first but now the lps have told him they're waiting on some baby Savannahs, he's just not interested anymore and the poor thing is being left to rot.
    He told me two weeks ago that he intended to sell it but he hasn't even put out an ad. I even had to clean the enclosure out the other day because as far as I could tell, he hasn't been bothered with that since last time I was at their house. I don't understand it because he was always good to his monitor, but neglect is neglect and whatever the reason, it's wrong.
    I tried to talk to my friend but she just said he'll sort it and not to worry but if it bothered me that much, I could take it home with me, even though he wouldn't be too chuffed about not getting paid for it.
    I'm sorely tempted because I can't stand to sit back wondering what will happen when the lps get their stock. The iguana is in the monitor enclosure and he doesn't intend to sell it with the lizard.
    I have an old 36" viv from when my bearded dragon was young that I could set up but I can't find any information about how to care for this type of iguana or how big it'll grow.
    Calling an animal protection service is my last resort because I don't know of anywhere that deals with reptiles.
    Any info or advice or help that anyone can give will be a great help.
    Thanks to all who read and reply to this.
  2. Rich

    Rich Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

  3. coz1134

    coz1134 Member

    The names in the title of the thread are exactly what the pet shop sold it as but after looking it up online, I'm not so sure. I'll try to get a photograph of it and post it here but that is dependant on me being able to locate the lizard when I get to his house. He/she seems to like hiding and I wouldn't want to cause him/her any unnecessary stress by dragging him/her out for a photograph.
    I did find that care sheet but I think its slightly vague in certain aspects (or perhaps I'm over thinking it). It had a lot of helpful information in it but it mentions things I know next to nothing about, such as humidity. My beardie was my first lizard and they have very dry enclosures.
    Ordinarily when considering an animal, I find out all I can and act a bit clueless with the sellers to see if they know what they're talking about. My theory is that a knowledgeable seller is more likely to have healthy stock.
    This time around, I don't have that luxury. Either I take him/her on and raise it or I find a way to rehome it. Either way, I'd like to have some hard facts to go on/ pass on. I don't want his/her next owner (if it isn't me) going through the same struggle of trying to find information.
    Whether or not I can keep him/her depends largely on space requirements. I have a few friends with green iguanas so I know how big they can get (largest is 6').
    I'm not sure I'd have room for something that big, long-term.
    Thank you so much for replying. I want to make sure this little guy (s/he's little at the moment, anyhow) has the life he deserves. Thank you for helping me *hugs*
  4. lilacdragon

    lilacdragon New Member

    Hi, Coz 1134.

    I have a Ctenosaura palearis, I named him Baby Blue. I adopted him as a rescue, about 5 years ago. He was only a baby back then, but now he's fully grown and he's a wonderful, very handsome boy. If you rescue this baby, you will grow to love him and with patience and care, he will come to love you. They are very shy and flighty, and are totally arboreal (tree-living), they live in hollow trees so although you keep them exactly like a green iguana in terms of a tall vivarium with stout climbing branches, you need to make him a hide box "up in the tree". Blue has one I made out of a very big half-circle of cork bark (like an arch) fixed to a wooden shelf that I covered with a piece of reptile carpet. It's like a sort of cave on a shelf, with a thick tree branch leading up to it. It's his security, he rushes inside it whenever anything appears that he isn't sure about.

    They don't grow huge, at all. He is about twice the weight of my beardies, but his body isn't a huge lot bigger, maybe he is about 2ft 2in long with a 14-inch body and a tail almost as long as his body. They have feet like a green iguana, for tree climbing, with long sharp claws. The tail is armoured and heavily muscled, and has sharp ridges. In the wild they use it to block the tree hole and so a predator can't get at them.
    Because they are very timid in the wild, they don't like being handled much. Blue had some very bad experiences and two owners, before I adopted him from a reptile rescue and he would leap away and try to escape when he even saw me, to start with. But slowly, I tamed him and he came to trust me. I don't pick him up, but he will come to me and jump on my arm and climb up to my shoulder now. He adores banana and mealworms, those are his treats, and I'm training him with a dog clicker. They are very intelligent, alert lizards.

    They are like beardies, for diet - they eat about 50% greens and 50% insects when young, but as they mature they eat more greens, and Blue only gets insects twice a week now, but greens every day.
    They come from dry tropical forests not rainforest, so they don't need as high humidity as a green iguana. Blue does like me to spray him with warm water occasionally, especially when he's shedding, but he never goes in his water bowl, although he has a very big one which he could sit in if he wanted to.

    There is one other thing you should know. Last year, Ctenosaura palearis were declared Endangered and were listed as a CITES B protected species. This means that in theory your baby should not have been sold without paperwork. But I'm not sure how this works in the USA, or whether - if he was captive bred - it actually applies.

    I hope this helps...

    Best wishes,

  5. lilacdragon

    lilacdragon New Member

    Here is a photo of Baby Blue o:)

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