Controlling the Exotic, Black and White Argentine Tegu Lizard
From being “cute” little nine-inch babies, the exotic black and white Argentine tegu lizards can grow to five feet long – which led to many owners in the past just letting them loose. They can survive our winters and reproduce– they’re omnivores and have no trouble finding plenty to eat. It’s now illegal to purchase or sell them in South Carolina, or to let them loose. As they are not protected, you can catch them in traps, and, if you live where it is legal to discharge a firearm, you can shoot them. Any of these lizards you kill, capture or find dead should be reported to DNR as they perform necropsies on them to get valuable information about just what animals they’re eating and to check for parasites and diseases they may spread.