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Yes, torturing green iguanas is against the law

The invasive green iguana is a pest that threatens the Cayman Islands, but should it be OK to torture one of these animals?

A nine-second video shows a man carrying a green iguana dangling from a stick on Fairbanks Road near Triple C school. It was posted on social media over the weekend and caused much outrage and debate.

The incident was reported to police Saturday (18 March). Police confirmed Monday (20 March) that if an iguana was tortured, it would be an offence under the law.

The Department of Environment told Cayman 27 green iguanas are not a protected species, and it’s not illegal to kill these invasive pests if it’s done humanely.

Under the animals law, there is no exemption for the green iguana in the language regarding animal cruelty.

“After carefully reviewing the video it is the conclusion that the iguana shown in the video was already dead at the time and the apparent movement is simply due to the motion of the pole and rope,” said the Department of Agriculture in a statement.

About the author

Joe Avary

Joe Avary

Joe Avary has been with Cayman 27 since 2014. He brings 20 years in television experience to the job, working hard every day to bring the people of Cayman stories that inform the public and make a difference in the community. Joe hopes his love for the Cayman Islands shines through in his informative and entertaining weather reports. If you have a story idea for Joe or just want to say hello, call him at 324-2141 or send an email to

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