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Fun Fact Friday - Fiji Banded Iguana (Brachylophus fasciatus)



Fiji Banded Iguanas (Brachylophus fasciatus) are a beautiful medium-sized lizard endemic to the gorgeous Lau Islands of Fiji. They are one of the very few Iguana species found outside of the New World. Being an endangered species, unfortunately, less than 6,000 of these animals are left in the wild. You will usually find these animals spending most of their time living up in the high rainforest trees.



Noticeable traits


The Fiji Banded Iguana is a medium-sized lizard, usually reaching lengths of 22-24” head to tail. Within this species, there is sexual dimorphism between the males and the females, with the males generally being slightly bigger than the females. A clear difference between the two is that the females tend to stay all green - with maybe occasional patches or marks slightly lighter than the rest of the body. However, males tend to have two or three white/ pale blue bands along their bodies.


These beautiful animals have crested spines and long tails and toes, which help them with their balance and help them climb tall island trees.


Housing


The minimum size enclosure we recommend for one of these lizards is a 4ft x 2ft x 2ft (L x H x D) vivarium. However, if you can give them the extra height, these animals will use it as they are an arboreal species. We must always ensure that we supply them with an adequate heat source (such as a bulb and dimming thermostat) and suitable UVB, as these animals are diurnal and require UVB to remain healthy and thriving.


We always recommend trying to provide a plethora of enrichment for your animal - using branches and plants does help create more of a naturalistic environment for them to show off their natural behaviours.



Feeding


Fiji Banded Iguanas are primarily herbivores- usually foraging on leaves, flowers and fruits that they come across in the rainforest. They will, however, also eat insects, but it isn’t their primary diet. Our care sheet section on our website has a guide on which salads and fruits are best suited as a primary diet for herbivore animals. All food must be dusted with Calcium and Multivit/D3 supplements before feeding so that we can ensure we are providing them with a well-balanced diet, including all of the nutrients that they need.


Handling


It is always advised to allow your animal a few days to settle in before starting to handle so that the animal can get accustomed to its new environment. Fiji Banded Iguanas are a lot smaller than other popular iguanas in the pet trade, making them a lot easier to handle. With regular, consistent and frequent handling, your animal will become more comfortable with being held by you. This species is for more of an advanced keeper as they require a lot of work to get to that comfortable handling stage. It may take some time, but eventually, you will be able to build a strong bond with your animal.


All in all, Fiji Banded Iguanas are beautiful animals that can make for an incredible pet.


Thanks for reading!

From,

Danni

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