An Invasion Of Nile Monitor Lizards

Running wild for awhile now down near Cape Coral
in Florida are these giant lizards that fight and quarrel
with whatever they please. There is now a large colony
of Nile monitor lizards, which grow over five feet long,
terrorizing and eating many of the native fauna they see.
How did the lizards come from Africa where they belong?

Authorities suspect their release after being someone’s pets
twenty years ago. Now frequently the police department gets
frantic calls of monster lizards walking across a suburban lawn.
These lizards hunt prey in the water, in the trees, on the ground,
eating birds, reptiles, amphibians, small mammals from dawn
to dark. They will eat anything they can get their mouth around!

One lady went into her backyard to find in her goldfish pond
a monitor merrily eating all those fish of which she was so fond.
Florida officials worry these giant lizards will become such a pest,
devouring all from armadillos to alligators as awful annihilators,
that frightened residents might move to some safer state out west.
To study the situation scientists now closely monitor the monitors.

Harry Edward Gilleland      07.20.03