September 16-- Conservationists with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources are tracking Argentine Tegu Lizards which can grow up to four feet long.
The Tegus love to eat eggs and are a threat to other species according to Matt Elliott, Assistant Chief of Wildlife Conservation, "They are a real generalist predator with a particular like for eggs. Any kind of ground nesting bird, turtles, gopher tortoises or things like that are prey for Tegus so we don't want them to become established. They eat almost anything, from fruit to small animals, but they love eggs."
Elliott says they've trapped eight of the lizards in the Toombs-Tattnall County area, "The Argentinian black and white Tegu has become quite popular as a pet and for a few years now have established themselves in Florida and recently we have a small population that may be established in southeast Georgia in the Vidalia area.
According to Elliott, the lizards are not aggressive to humans and he's seeking the public's help in mapping their locations.
If you see a Tegu, call the DNR at 478-994-1438 or send a picture to www.georgiawildlife.com/tegus