Sept. 17 (UPI) -- A Colorado State Parks employee responded to a call about an unusual animal and was surprised to find exactly what the caller described: an iguana wandering loose in a park.
Eleven Mile State Park Manager Darcy Mount said she has responded to several calls about exotic animals that turned out to be cases of creature mistaken identity, so she was skeptical when a park visitor reported an iguana wandering loose.
Mount said iguanas are native to tropical climates and would not last long in the colder Colorado climate, even during the summer.
Mount said she was shocked to find the caller was correct.
"You just never really know what you're going to get," Mount told KUSA-TV. "Sure enough, it was an iguana."
The park manager said the iguana is most likely a pet that either escaped from its owner or was abandoned at a campsite.
"[Dumping] is very cruel and inhumane for a tropical lizard. There's no food source up here for an iguana. Nothing," she said. "If it survived the temperatures, it would have starved to death."
Mount said she set up a heat lamp for the iguana in her office until it could be transported to the Colorado Reptile Humane Society in Longmont.
Officials said the young adult iguana, now dubbed Miles, will soon be available for adoption.