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One of my favorite joys of owning an iguana, especially one as expressive and full of personality as Dorian, is the wonton rabidity to which he approaches fruit. Iguanas should be fed a diet of mostly leafy greens and other staple vegetables, but 5% of that diet should include citrus, melons, or the rare banana. Dorian’s favorite fruit is most likely an orange of some kind, whether it be mandarins, which he’ll devour whole if you let him; navels, which even a whiff to Dorian is like blood in the water to a shark; or even minneolas and tangelos, which are so juicy, it sounds like he’s drinking them when he’s eating them; you can hear the liquid sloshing around like a barrel of rum on a pirate ship.
Dorian also loves his berries, chiefly blackberries. I remember in one particular sitting, he ate 34 blackberries from a Costco clamshell. And here you thought that the only people who shop for berries in bulk were pie makers. He enjoys raspberries but is no fan of strawberries or blueberries. For some reason, the strawberries are just a bit too sweet for him, and perhaps the blueberries are just too tart for my iggy. One of the misconceptions (and the reason I write this blog) is to combat the misperception that iguanas, and by proxy, all reptiles, lack personality and character. But ask any herp-head and they’ll regale you with stories of their quirky geckos, cuddly beardies, or mischievous frillies. If he doesn’t like something, Dorian lets you know.  The first time I offered him kiwi, he gave it one test lick, snorted, and turned his head away. I tried wedging a piece in his mouth, and he kept spitting it out. Eventually, I assumed he was just being cranky and maybe he’d eat it if I left him alone, so I left some pieces on the shelf in his enclosure near his food dish only to see him kick them with his foot off said shelf. Soon after, he turned around, headbobbed, and put his head down. That’s not to say that Dorian won’t try new things; he’s just very discerning when it comes to his sweet tooth. Just last week he turned his nose up at a ring of pineapple to which he shook his head vigorously back and forth in contempt for the fruit I offered. I’d never given him pineapple before, but thought after 6 years, maybe he’d try it. Perhaps it’s just a distain for fruits of the pacific. He also found passion fruit disagreeable. Also on the list are kumquats, quince, and starfruit. The odd thing is in all of this, is that in buying all these varieties of fruit has given me a new appreciation for it as well, considering the fruit I at growing up was the occasional Jonathan apple or slice of watermelon during a family picnic. I’ll now nosh on the occasional Michigan cherry or tangerine when I would never even sample them before. Peaches are still off the list though. You can keep those. Blech.