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Don Boyd | all galleries >> Memories of Old Hialeah, Old Miami and Old South Florida Photo Galleries - largest non-Facebook collection on the internet >> Miami Area Tourist and Local ATTRACTIONS Historical Photos Gallery - All Years - click on image to view > 1972 - Iguanas at the Iguana Island inside the Crandon Park Zoo on Key Biscayne
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FEB-1972 1972 Dave Kleylein

1972 - Iguanas at the Iguana Island inside the Crandon Park Zoo on Key Biscayne

Key Biscayne, Florida

Thank you to former Miamian Dave Kleylein (William Jennings Bryan Elementary, North Miami Junior High, North Miami High, and Norland High Class of 1962) for contributing this image.

I donated three iguanas to the zoo's Iguana Island in the mid-60's at the insistence of Hialeah police officers who were tired of responding to terrified calls made by Mrs. Pat Fargason who lived behind me and was scared of the iguanas I released. They had become huge due to an abundance of food in our neighborhood and every time she went out to hang up laundry one would be crawling through her back yard. Sorry Pat! Now iguanas seem to be all over town and I have large ones come into my back patio several times a week.

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John 20-Jan-2008 18:23
Around the mid-60s we had a first encounter w/ an iguana in our yard located in S. Dade near Suniland Park. One of my friends called the Miami News and told them that there was a dinasour in our yard. The News swiftly arrived on scene, took a picture, and we made front page news from one of the paper's sections. Back then there were numerous "exotics" or "non-native" species housed at a myriad of different game farms, Serpentarium, pet shops, Crandon Park Zoo, Seaquarium, and more, located in and around Dade County. I suspect we have all them to thank for the proliferation of exotics in S. FL, that range from fish to birds to reptiles and mammals. Not a good ecological situation. I left Miami in the early 70s, but went back several times over the years. One distinct oddity I noticed on my trips back was the proliferation of a bird they called the "love bird". I also remember more and more geikos popping up every time I would return, and I understand that boas and pythins are common place in the Everglades and occasionally around town.