iguana hibiscus dil...
 
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iguana hibiscus dilemma

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stt007
(@stt007)
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I love the (1 or 2?) Iguana I have roaming my front yard, but I might be less loving in the future. I just planted a hibiscus garden of sorts about 6 weeks ago and unfortunately this past week, I noticed large buds were getting chopped off these plants right before they bloomed. I am pretty sure it is these iguana munching away at night. Anybody know a way to prevent them from doing this? It was alot of work to put these plants in so i could enjoy the flowers, but that is not happening anymore. Was thinking of netting or a short metal fence or maybe an elixir like cat urine as I hear they do not like cats. Any help from all the experienced folks on this board would be greatly appreciated.

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Topic starter Posted : February 22, 2010 12:02 am
Lizard
(@Lizard)
Trusted Member

Try Iguana Soup, or Iguana Shoes!:@) Sorry I couldn't resist.

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Posted : February 22, 2010 12:26 am
stt007
(@stt007)
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Is there such a thing as an iguana trap? Like a have a heart trap for squirrels? If so, where do you get one?

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Topic starter Posted : February 22, 2010 12:50 pm
rks
 rks
(@rks)
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I'm no expert on herps, but the several iguanas around our house are completely dormant at night, and they don't pester our hibiscus unless they're in bloom. Rats on the other hand love buds and are principally active at night. Several insects also prey on hibiscus buds, although you should be able to find the buds on the ground (unless a rat has found them first.) You might want to do a bit more research to see if the iguanas are truly the culprits. Good luck.

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Posted : February 22, 2010 1:15 pm
heathea
(@heathea)
Active Member

Yeah, iguanas are diurnal (up in day) and sleep at night. Fun thing to do with a pet iguana...there is a clear scale on the top of their head, this is actually a light sensing organ/3rd eye type thing. You can cover it up with your finger and they will close their eyes.
Don't try this with wild iguanas. just...don't.
And I second it as a rat problem.
Good luck!

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Posted : February 22, 2010 1:37 pm
DixieChick
(@DixieChick)
Trusted Member

had our first iggie in the yard yesterday. a 2 footer. came into the garage where we were working. so cute. he slept all night. I will share my hib. flowers with him (or her). enought to go around. plus i fed him all kinds of fruit yesterday.. he (or she) had a great interest in my bright red toe nail polish.

how do you train them and how do you tell male from the females???

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Posted : February 22, 2010 3:47 pm
pamela
(@pamela)
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sprinkle them with cayenne pepper - the bushes not the iquanas.

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Posted : February 22, 2010 5:07 pm
stt007
(@stt007)
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I know that works with squirrels....didn't know it would work with rats. is that the voice of experience speaking? Thanks.

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Topic starter Posted : February 22, 2010 6:29 pm
pamela
(@pamela)
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oh yeah. Rats and iquanas.

Pamela

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Posted : February 22, 2010 6:33 pm
stt007
(@stt007)
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Good news...cayenne pepper seemed to work - no missind buds as far as I could tell. I sprinkled leaves and buds, is that correct? What happens if it rains? Do I need to resprinkle? How often do I do the pepper? Does it eventually not need to be done anymore? I also added a rat trap this morning. Thanks again for the help.

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Topic starter Posted : February 23, 2010 11:16 am
DixieChick
(@DixieChick)
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my iguana disappeared. :S i was hoping he would stay around. wanted to train him for guard duty. are they territorial (sp)? could he or she still be around but just hiding?

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Posted : February 23, 2010 12:37 pm
heathea
(@heathea)
Active Member

Dixiechick, I am sorry your iguana disappeared. :(. I've never met a wild "caught" one before as a pet, just had experience with bred in captivity pet iguanas. They can be territorial especially during breeding season - but not to sure they can be trained to guard duty. 🙂
Here is a site with good information regarding sexing. http://www.greenigsociety.org/malefemale.htm

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Posted : February 23, 2010 4:37 pm
DixieChick
(@DixieChick)
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thanks heathea

will check out that site. hope our chickens didn't chase it away. maybe it was just passing through on its way to be sexed.:-o

i will look for her-him again tonight.

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Posted : February 23, 2010 6:03 pm
stt007
(@stt007)
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Will cayenne pepper burn or harm the plant?

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Topic starter Posted : February 23, 2010 11:28 pm
pamela
(@pamela)
Trusted Member

Nah, will not burn them. Will burn you a bit if you get it in a cut but then it has antibiotic qualities so it is OK. Feel free to yell curses at me as it hurts you.

Oddly enough, I use cayenne pepper for cuts and scrapes. It promotes healing, keeps scarring to a minimum and it will not get infected. Of course, you will curse me like a ...... for a moment or three.

Pamela

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Posted : February 24, 2010 1:17 am
stt007
(@stt007)
Advanced Member

Anyone know specifics on cayenne pepper application? Sprinkle on leaves and buds not on ground, right? What happens if it rains? Do I need to resprinkle? How often do I do the pepper? Does it eventually not need to be done anymore?
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Topic starter Posted : February 24, 2010 9:57 am
stt007
(@stt007)
Advanced Member

Never mind. Buds missing this morning. Maybe iguana are eating the ripe buds...those ready to
pop early in the morning before I get up. Pepper all over the place but still have all the tops lopped off. Very discouraging. Don't know what to do.

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Topic starter Posted : February 24, 2010 11:00 am
stt007
(@stt007)
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I think I need a friendly iguana trap

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Topic starter Posted : February 24, 2010 11:13 am
rks
 rks
(@rks)
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Iguanas are almost certainly NOT the problem. Being reptiles they are inert during the cool night hours. We have a pet iguana and it finds a spot in its cage at sundown and is completely motionless until sunrise. It NEVER moves at night. Have you ruled out rats definitively? They are nocturnal, they are voracious omnivores that decimate all but the toughest plant species by eating buds and inner bark, and they are under intense population pressure to exploit any new food source. Good luck.

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Posted : February 24, 2010 2:07 pm
li2stx
(@li2stx)
Advanced Member

try adding the cayenne pepper to some water in a spray bottle and spraying the plants. Its faster and easier and it will stay on the leaves longer than dry cayenne. I think you can also use any kind of hot sauce. Mix it up until you find the combo your pest dislikes the most.

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Posted : February 24, 2010 2:45 pm
pamela
(@pamela)
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mongeese maybe?

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Posted : February 24, 2010 3:13 pm
STXBob
(@STXBob)
Trusted Member

Maybe you can ID the culprit by raking the dirt smooth around the hibiscus and looking for footprints in the morning. Then go to Google Images and look for "iguana footprints" or whatever you think it might be, and check for a match.

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Posted : February 24, 2010 6:02 pm
stt007
(@stt007)
Advanced Member

have not completely ruled out rats and have kept trap in place. will try to liquify cayenne pepper and adding hot sauce. thanks for that idea.

A neighbor suggested I turn off a dusk to dawn spotlight I have nearby. It might be fooling iguana into thinking it is night time. I still have experiments going on for both critters. Will see if turning off spotlight does any good. that will be one piece of data to help solve this problem.

thanks for suggestions. any others welcome. I will update with results.

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Topic starter Posted : February 25, 2010 12:43 pm
rks
 rks
(@rks)
Advanced Member

@pamela, the mongoose (pl: mongooses or@USVI: mongoose-dem 😀 ) is carnivorous and, sadly, diurnal which is why both mongooses and rats so easily coexist. They'll eat birds, carion, eggs and each other but not plants.

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Posted : February 25, 2010 3:11 pm
pamela
(@pamela)
Trusted Member

well, you learn something new everyday.

I have a chihuahua so no rats, iguanas (live ones at any rate) or mongoose-dem.

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Posted : February 25, 2010 7:11 pm
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