APOPKA, Fla. - Incredible video out of Apopka, Florida shows a gigantic reptile climbing up a man’s door.
Reptile expert Mike Stefani, who specializes in monitor lizards, says his first thought upon seeing the video was that someone’s pet probably got loose.
"It’s pretty irresponsible to let any type of animal out of your care," said Stefani. "As a responsible animal owner and reptile owner, you should know where your animals are at all times. These few people – and there really are very few – that are irresponsible really give us a bad name."
Stefani says the reptile in the video is likely a Savannah Monitor Lizard, which is an invasive species from Africa.
"They’re a medium-sized African Varanus. A Varanus is a monitor lizard. And they’re insectivores, so they eat a lot of scorpions, insects, mollusks like snails," explained Stefani. "They’re not these big Komodo dragons that’ll tear your dogs and your cats apart."
Mike Stefani of Mike's Monitors shows off a monitor lizard
Stefani says if you do see one, you can call Fish and Wildlife, or you can try trapping it yourself.
"They’re really slow-moving. Even the wild ones, really they’re not that aggressive," said Stefani. "Just to be on the safe side for anyone who was unsure, if you went with a large beach towel, and you threw it over the animal – once you put a beach towel over that animal, then you can safely grab it by the back of the head and the base of the tail, then you can control it real easy."