Tegus originated in South America, where they’re a lot more tolerated than up north. Now, these scaly motherfuckers are pouring into Florida, where they were imported by exotic pet breeders to sell to hapless owners who realize too late that this Chamber Of Secrets resident isn’t the best companion, and proceed to set them loose into the wild. One person alone is known to be responsible for releasing thirty of these bastards into the Florida wilderness, where they’ve started breeding out of control, as Florida’s climate makes it a hospitable environment to both reptiles and eldritch horrors. Now they’ve started showing up on the properties of people who often mistake them for small alligators, which is apparently no cause for alarm among Florida homeowners.
And these critters, straight out of a bad 80s horror movie, aren’t going anywhere. Each female can lay up to 35 eggs per year and experts say it’s impossible for them to estimate how many of them are already out there. They hide underground in the winter, emerging in the spring like Satan’s hunger made flesh. They mostly roam on land, but, like any good swamp monster, can lurk underwater for long periods of time if need be. Their population is highest in the Miami and Tampa Bay areas, but they’ve been spotted as far as Panama City. That’s right: They’re moving north.