Most of these are nicer than they look.
(Thanks to “Unknowable” for the news tip)
Professional trappers with dogs are trying–and failing, so far–to capture an allegedly six-foot-long water monitor lizard whose wanderings in the local neighborhood has Florida homeowners freaking out (http://www.foxnews.com/science/2018/08/31/giant-lizard-in-florida-evades-capture-torments-family-its-terrifying-to-look-at.html).
One man reported the lizard scratching at his back door, trying to get into his house. He tried to lure the monitor into the garage; the lizard followed him for a ways, then turned and fled.
The worst thing I ever heard about water monitors is that they can be irascible when provoked–so don’t provoke one.
This animal has almost certainly been someone’s pet that got rejected and released when it got too big–a common fate of reptile pets. It’s acting like a pet that wants a home. It was selfish and cruel to release it into the wild. If you’re not going to keep your pet, don’t acquire it in the first place.
Most animals, monitor lizards included, respond to affection and care. This is not an animal you need to be afraid of. They say they’ll “euthanize” it if they catch it, so I’m hoping they don’t catch it. I’m hoping the critter can find another home. Water monitors live in Southeast Asia and don’t belong in Florida, on the loose in an unfamiliar environment. They’re big and scary-looking, but that’s in the eye of the beholder.
Incidents like this reflect very, very badly on people who opt for reptile pets.