April 1, 2022 8.30 pm

Sneaky suitcase lizards make 4,300 mile trip from Florida to Lincolnshire

Maybe they just fancied a holiday…

Think the sort of plot Home Alone writers would come up with, but make it lizards ending up in Lincolnshire, and that’s what you get with the curious case of Kevin and Perry.

Two anole lizards, which are harmless tree-dwelling reptiles native to America, found themselves on a 4,300 mile trip from their homes in Florida in a suitcase, ending up in Kirton in Lindsey, Lincolnshire.

They made it across the pond to the UK after being found in the suitcase of vet Mark Goodlad, who spotted a stowaway lizard peeking out at him.

Due to his occupation, Mark is used to dealing with all kinds of animals, so he was able to calmly catch the lizard and keep it safe. That was until he found another one running around his home!

Mark conducted research on how to keep them safe before they could be collected by the RSPCA, and he even admitted to being quite sad when they were taken away by the animal rescue charity.

He said: “I was worried how they would cope with this climate here – but the weather here at the time wasn’t too indifferent to that in Florida, plus they had already survived being 37,000ft high in cold temperatures during an eight hour flight. I put them in two separate containers and placed them in the greenhouse to keep them warm, comfortable and calm.

“We suspect the pair had snuck in our suitcase while we were packing – and had left the case open on the bed. It’s incredible to think they have travelled all this way and were unharmed.

“I was actually quite sad to see them go when the RSPCA collected them. They were very cute and seemed quite happy sitting in the warmth of the greenhouse – we had even called them Kevin and Perry after the Harry Enfield characters! But I knew that they needed to go to a specialist who would be able to meet their needs.”

Animal rescue officer Dave Holgate was on hand to collect the sneaky pair and take them to a reptile expert, who will look after Kevin and Perry due to the difficulty of being able to return accidentally imported lizards to their natural environment.