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My Sweet Sativa

Discussion in 'Ctenosaura - Spiny Tail Iguana' started by QueenKitty13, Dec 13, 2007.

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  1. QueenKitty13

    QueenKitty13 Member

    I have a black spiny tailed iguana, and can find almost no info on husbandry for her(?).o..she is very moody, but I know that is something that takes time and patience, which she gets plenty of. I spoke to a vet that is supposed to be very good and even he could not tell me much, except that she was from fla. and that they were basically a mutation of another type of iguana that were let lose into the wild from a zoo that had shut down decades ago??...he told me to care f:confused: or it just as I do for my BD's...but I was kind of hoping to meet someone to chat with that also has one of these buggers...
  2. Moshpitrockchick

    Moshpitrockchick Subscribed User Premium Member

    I don't have one myself, but I know Dominick does, I hear they can be real boogers...
    I also have never heard this "mutated escaped zoo animal" story. I think it's just a story, do you have a reptile vet or is it a general vet who see herps sometimes?

    Here are some links to Dominick's threads on his Cteno:
  3. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    ROFLMAO! The stories that people tell! That is absolute malarkey!:D
    The Black spiney tailed iguana (Ctenosaurus similis) Is a species unto itself and is native to Mexico down to Panama. Often the ones in the pet trade are captured from feral populations down in Florida where they have become established due to escaped or released pets. There is an article on the entire Ctenosaura group in the November issue of Reptiles Magazine if you can find it. Their recommendations are to give them UVB light, a basking spot of about 110-115 degrees and ambient temperature of 75 degrees. Diet should be as recommended for green iguanas. The occassional cricket or pinky mouse won't hurt but too many crickets with baby or young spiney tails is known to create impaction.
  4. QueenKitty13

    QueenKitty13 Member

    yeah, I had no luck trying to validate this story, but I did see a few articles about them living in fla and one article about them being in a more western

    as for feeding her I have been giving her veggies, fruit, and a few bugs. She really likes green beans, but they don't get them too much, mostly "greens" salad, fruit and vegetable du jour, and for her 2 or 3 gutloaded crix twice a week and a superworm or two a week.

    we go on a cycle, for a week- or a day she wants to be held, then she wants NOTHING to do with hands or people, so I use gloves some of the time, I do hand feed her (no glove for this) and she really likes that, a hand with food always works!

    any tips on how to care for her better would be much appreciated!!!
  5. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    I myself have no personal experience with Ctenos, only what I read in the aforementioned magazine article.
    It did say that the younger you get it the more likely you will be able to socialize it. Even so some will remain lizards with a very bad attitude!
    Dominick is the only one I know who has one himself.
  6. Dominick

    Dominick Founding Member

    Greetings Queenkitty13-

    Sorry, I've been traveling and just saw your post.

    Care is exactly like that for Green Iguanas, only the food can change. As youngsters and adolescents, Ctenos are omnivorous and like bugs, pinkies and their greens. As they mature, they become herbivores and sustain on only a green diet. A pinkie mouse here or there, ocassionally, will help keep calcium levels up.

    There are MANY types of Ctenosaura from various regions. Mine is Ctenosaura similis (also called spiny-tailed iguana). Would need to see a picture of yours to specifically identify the species.

    Ctenos are ground-dwelling creatures and as such much more skittish than their tree-dwelling cousins Iguana iguana. This makes them VERY defensive and bitey. If yours is still a baby, it's best you keep doing what you are doing and handle it daily. It will take time and patience to socialize it, but as you can see in my previous posts with Teena, anything is possible! So, keep working at it and never back down to the lizard.

    Good luck to you and your Cteno. I had the pleasure of handling a Cteno in California a few years back that was as tame as a dog! Just further proves that they CAN be socialized successfully!
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