Americana: Leapin' Lizards

The majority of Floridians are not native born. Among recent transplants, however, are creatures who have come not for a balmy retirement, but for work, mostly at night. They are geckos—purple polka-dotted lizards, ranging from three inches to a foot long—and their job is eating cockroaches. Convinced that poisons and fatally sticky boxes do not provide enough firepower in the roach war, many Floridians are giving store-bought geckos (price: $10 to $20 apiece) the run of their homes. Bill Huff, who owns House of Pets in Tallahassee, says he sold 36 geckos in one week. He ran an ad in...

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