Snake vs Iguana (What are Iguanas)

snake vs iguana

A fight between Snake vs Iguana will be exciting to watch. The exciting part will be to see how an iguana would behave in front of a snake. But before comparing both the reptiles, we will first discuss facts about them. 

What are Snakes?

Snakes are more dangerous than any other reptile species. Even in most religious books, snakes are associated with evil and are seen as a bad omen. But many people in the world kept it as a pet. There are around 3000 species of snakes that can be found throughout the world. 

Snakes do not have a nose to smell like other creatures. Instead, they have a split tongue, which they use to smell and taste chemical structure in the air. They also do not have eyelids or ears, neither they are unable to move their eyes. To hear they feel the vibration from the ground. Snakes shed their skin thrice a year, which is known as molting. 

Not all the snake species are poisonous; some of them are non-poisonous too. There are different ways to identify whether the snake is venomous or not. For example- if the snake has a diamond-shaped pupil, it is toxic, while the snakes with a round pupil are non-poisonous. 

Also read difference between a zebra and a horse.

What are Iguanas?

An iguana is a type of lizard that is bigger as compared to other lizard species. Their exceptional ability can identify them, the saggy skin on their throat and the spines that stick out from their neck, head, back, and tails. There are 35 recognized species of iguana. 

The Galapagos marine iguana is black. The dark color helps them absorb heat from the sun after they swim in the ocean to keep them warm. While the marine iguanas also have flattened tails that help them to swim through the water like crocodiles. On the other hand, green iguanas are tough; they can fell from a branch up to 40 feet high and survive. In America, people farm and feed on iguanas. 

Snake Habitat:

Snakes can be found in almost every area of the world. They can be seen in deserts, swamps, and grasslands. Some of the snake species live in underground burrows or under the rock spaces. While some snakes like the cottonmouth water live in water most of the time. 

Although they can be found throughout the world except for the colder region, snakes are cold-blooded, which means they do not have the means to regulate their body temperature. When the outside temperature is cold, snakes’ body temperature would be bitter too since their body does not use energy to create heat to warm themselves. During the cold season, many snakes hide in underground tunnels. 

Iguana Habitat:

Like snakes, iguanas are also cold-blooded creatures and prefer to live in warmer temperatures. As they do not have any means to regulate internal heat within their bodies, they depend on outside temperature that keeps them warm. Iguanas can be found in Mexico, Central and South America, the Galapagos Island, Caribbean Island, Madagascar, and Fiji. These lizards typically habitat in tropical and sub-tropical forests, coastlines, and deserts.

Snake Size:

The world’s smallest snake species is the thread snake, which grows only about 3.9 inches long. On the other hand, the giant snake is the reticulated python, which can grow to a massive 30 feet. 

Iguana size:

The longest of the iguanas is the green iguana, which grows between 5 and 7 feet long from nose to tail. The smallest of the iguana is the spiny-tailed iguana, which rises to 4.9 to 39 inches long. The heaviest iguana is the blue iguana that can weigh up to 30 pounds. 

Snake Species:

Following are the species of snakes-

  • Black mamba
  • Coral snakes
  • Corn snakes
  • Cobras
  • Water Moccasin (cottonmouth)
  • Garter snakes
  • Rattlesnakes

Iguana Species:

Given below are the iguana species-

  • Green iguana
  • Fiji banded iguana
  • Galapagos marine iguana
  • Galapagos pink land iguana
  • Common desert iguana
  • Spiny-tailed iguana

Snake Diet:

Snakes are carnivorous and only feed on meat. Most of the snake species swallow their whole prey. However, giant snake such as python first bring their prey to death and then take it whole. Snakes are capable of eating animals that are about 75 to 100 percent bigger than their size. They have been known to feed animals such as crocodiles and cows. Once they eat the animal, their body releases enzymes to break the food down into useable energy. Like other animals, snakes do not frequently eat as they have a slow metabolism rate. 

Iguana Diet:

Most of the iguana species are herbivorous and feed only on vegetation. Their diet consists of flowers, buds, fruits, and young leaves. The marine iguana gets its food by removing algae from rocks in the ocean or by eating seaweed. Along with vegetation, some wild and pet iguanas have seen enjoying worms, crickets, and small mice. 

Snake Reproduction:

It is a common misunderstanding that snakes build nests for eggs. Only the king cobra species, will make a nest for its young. All snakes do not lay eggs; some of them give live births, much like mammals. It is because some climates are too cold for the eggs to develop and hatch. Hence, the snakes living in colder regions do not lay eggs. 

Iguana Reproduction:

Like other lizard species. Iguanas also lay eggs. Only the number varies for different species. For example, the female rock iguana is 5 to 20 eggs, while the green iguana is around 65 eggs. The iguanas lay their eggs in a burrow in a warm and sunny area. The tunnel will stay a stable 77 to 89 degrees Fahrenheit, which incubates the eggs until they hatch. 

Are Snakes Endangered?

According to the IUCN red list, the Amami Takachiho is considered as vulnerable. However, the rarest and most endangered snake is the St. Lucia Racer. It is studied that only 18 out of 100 of these snakes are left. 

Are Iguanas Endangered?

According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the iguanas, are the most endangered animals. Their population is decreasing drastically due to habitat loss and predators. The Galapagos pink land iguana and the spiny-tailed iguana is considered as critically endangered.

Iguanas versus Snake: Fight Comparison

Their size and species can determine the conclusion between iguana and snake fight. There are different kinds of snakes and iguanas, ranging from small to larger. All of them display unusual behavior, some of them can be aggressive while others may not be too dangerous. 

If we compare iguana with a cobra snake, the snake will be dangerous for iguana and bring it to death in one bite. In its self-defense, an iguana can use its tail to knock down the snake and its powerful jaws to bite the snake’s body. But we all know that snakes are venomous, and only one bite can end iguana’s life. 

Planet Earth Snakes Iguana:

The planet earth team filmed the iguana snake chase that has taken the internet by storm. But one sequence from the first episode holds the top spot. Marine iguanas on the Galapagos Islands have a tough journey from their hatching place. To cross the beaches and reach the safety of the adult iguanas on the island. The film was the best example of how wildlife films can be engaging and get more people interested in the natural world. 

Also read about monkey fighting snakes.