Puerto Rico plans eradication of Iguanas

| 07/02/2012

iguana (230x250).jpg(NBC): Puerto Rico, plagued by iguanas for years, is taking a violent stand against the ubiquitous reptiles. The government is proposing an iguana eradication project that would both eliminate the long-time nuisances, and bolster the territory's lackluster economy by exporting the reptiles' meat for as much as $6 a pound. "That is a lot more than chicken," said Daniel Galan Kercado, secretary of the Department of Natural Resources. "It has great economic potential."  The reptiles have cost the U.S. territory hundreds of thousands of dollars annually by sunbathing on San Juan's airport runways.

They disrupt traffic and cause power outages by building nests near power plants and wrecking building foundations by burrowing holes underneath them.

The Department of Health approved Galan's plan to train volunteers to capture live iguanas and bring them to a processing center where they can be killed and prepared for export. The complete plan is expected to be finalized by May, when it will be presented to several government agencies for final approval.

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Category: Science and Nature

Comments (23)

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  1. gooch says:

    We should trade with Canada. We send them our green Iguanas, and they send us a few dozen Moose.

    How cool would it be for the Cruise-Shippers to see a bunch of wild Moose hanging out downtown as they get off the boat. Just roaming the streets…chilling by the t-shirt shops.

    Now THAT would bring in the tourists.

    "Come to Cayman for the sun and sand. Stay for the Moose".

  2. Ebanks says:

    I wouldn't kill them, I would catch them and have them farmed. Make them lay eggs like chicken and sell the eggs for a hefty price. At the same time, separate the males from the females, and make proper natural pens with plants and shrubs, so the visiting tourists can come in and see them. How I see it, we have to use and control what we have – not destroy 

  3. Anonymous says:

    Don'tworry Iggys.  I am filing a restraining order on your behalf.  This is discrimination.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Set a small price for each capture and I gurantee you dem crackheads will get 'em eradicated!

    • Anonymous says:

      That's brilliant. and then the crackies could buy more crack (and smoke it) thus enriching their lives, AND the lives of the crack dealers.  In the end, we all end up winners, and we can wipe out a species!

      • Anonymous says:

        Better than robbery and burglarising homes.

      • Anonymous says:

        You are not wiping out a species dimwit. They are not indigenous to these Islands and only arrived here a couple of decades ago. They are complete pests. BTW do you also complain about spraying  mosquitoes on the grounds that we are trying to wipe out a species?

        The crackies will find the money to buy crack regardless. Would you prefer that they rob up for the money?    

  5. Victorious Secret says:

    I just want to know… Who is paying $6 a pound for Iguana meat?

    Because if someone is that dumb to pay that much for iguana meat then there's a bridge in Brooklyn that I want to sell them as well!

    • Anonymous says:

      You'd be surprised how many people would pay around $5  for the meat. Right now a number of people catch the iguana here in Grand Cayman and send the meat to Houduras to sell. Not sure exactly  what they charge per pound, but  it is exported.

      I ate it once and i'ts even better than chicken, it's much cleaner than chicken as  iguanas only eat plants.

      A lot of Caymanians cook and eat it now. Don't knock it until you taste it.

       

  6. caymanian stew says:

    Many people don't know this, but iguanas have natural enemies, such as, the hawk, eagle, snake, and fox or a wild dog. In some places, their eggs are cooked like the chicken eggs. Dogs have enzymes in their body’s to break down raw food, and dogs can be trained to catch and eat iguanas in the wild. So long its a fresh kill, the iguana flesh should provide a good source of protein. Our neighbors in Central America eat them. Their tails, claws, and head are sliced off, and just like a chicken you have to empty the intestines and stomach parts. The iguana is then disected by a razor sharp knife. The arms and legs as well are disected, and the meat more like the muscle, is what is cooked. What Puerto Rico is doing, makes absolute sense. Remember these reptiles are vegetarians. The only part that would be bad for you is the hands and feet, which could be infected. I suggest you cut them off, but spare the arms and legs. Ifyou have a dog, do not allow the animal to eat a dead iguana carcus. It could sicken your dog with butalism toxins. A fresh kill is better. Unfortunately, we don't have hawks and eagles, and we definitely don't want anymore snakes. So just like the Lion fish, we may have to think creative ways to capture these animals, and most definitely educate the public on the difference between the green iguana (the invasive species we have now) ,  and our protect blue iguanas, which it is illegal for us to kill. For your infomation, the green iguanas have black stripes on its tail. The protected blue iguanas don't have them, and that is how you can tell the difference. A foot long or less, green iguana is very esay to catch. They do not bite back or pose any resistance whilst being captured. It will pose no harm if you can catch him with your hands. I have seen alot of kids climb trees and catch these iguanas with their bare hands. The larger ones do use the tail like a whip. So you may have to use both hand to capture the iguana, one hand to hold onto the neck or body, and the next hand to hold onto the upper part of the iguanas tail. They are very simple to handle, so long you don't put your hand in front of their mouth. Another thing, did you know, iguana raw meat can be used for fishing bait, can also attrack sharks. Just throwing out the information!  ;o)

    • Anonymous says:

      does the blue taste any different than the green?

      If we have enough snakes, and we get some more, do we have too many snakes?

      do monkeys eat them or can they be trained to catch them.  I would like to introduce monkeys to the island.

      could we use them to lure sharks close and then kill the sharks? You know, a win win situation. No more green iguanas and no more sharks.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Don’t knock it till you try it!

  8. Anonymous says:

    Delicious!

  9. Anonymous says:

    Wonder if we can get adopt the Puerto Rican plan. I am sick and tired of them crapping all over my yard and pool.

    If there is anyone on here who captures them and gets rid of them, please post your details. I and many in my neighborhood would pay to see them eradicated.

    • Anonymous says:

      I eradicate them for free….. but I will sometimes go to the bathroom in your pool.  Not all the time, but it's hard to predict.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Perhaps a similar plan should be formulated for the Cayman Islands. I too see economic potential here. Also, unlike Puerto Rico, the Hundorans on island already know how to catch them so the Goverment would save on training cost. 

  11. Anonymous says:

    Yackooo!

  12. Anonymous says:

    Gross.

    • Anonymous says:

      So is pork, lobster, conch, and TURTLE.

      • Anonymous says:

        Did you mean delicious?!

      • Anonymous says:

        Yummy, yummy, yummy, and yucky.

        Now to the poor iguana, I'm starting to feel sorryfor the poor little brutes.  They so ugly and no one loves them.

        Oh h—, We killing everything on the planet why not them too?  Off with their heads!