Experts measure march of the green iguana

| 07/12/2012

green iguana.JPG(CNS): Few people in Cayman are unaware of the negative impact that the invasion of green iguanas has had on the island and the spread of this prolific reptile is now the subject of a major study. The International Reptile Conservation Foundation has published an article that examines the devastating impact the march of the green iguana is having throughout the Caribbean and the Americas. With a 70% success rate for establishing new populations, the scientists found that if unimpeded the iguana will continue to grow and it advises countries that are not already plagued by the reptile to take protective precautions, including legislation. For those already invaded, immediate eradication to protect indigenous species, as in Cayman, was recommended.

The authors of the study stated that governments needed to plan accordingly to prevent the establishment of new iguana populations.

“Control of the Green Iguana invasion might best be undertaken by using a regional approach that encompasses the Greater Caribbean,” the article concludes. “Otherwise, the march of the Green Iguanas will continue and the negative genetic, ecological, environmental and economic effects currently associated with these beasts could soon affect the remainder of the region.”

See full article here.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    let make and effort to rid this creature ..they are eating everything

  2. Anonymous says:

    another classic cayman/simpsons crossover…..

  3. Anonymous says:

    Don’t knock it till you try it!

    Taste like tender chicken!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Put CIG in charge of saving them.  They will be gone in a year.  And another $20 million spent.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Surely, here is  a win-win solution.

    Solve both the unemployment and the green Iquana problems.

    Hire the unemployed to trap the green Iguanas, slaughter them, cook them into tasty products, and market their produce to the local food stores

    Then use the profits to pay for the program.




    • Anonymous says:

      Can they please make it taste like turtle meat .If they can ,then we might be able to replace turtle meat with iguana meat.GREEN IGUANA MEAT, THE TURTLE MEAT OF THE FUTURE.

  6. Anonymous says:

    i find them fascinating creatures….and so do alot of tourists who you often see posing or taking  pictures with them….

    if it is proven that they are having a negative environmental impact…..then humane culling should be considered….

  7. Anonymous says:

    My wife and I experienced one aspect of the Green Iguana situation which was disgusting. The animals would climb onto the roof of our house and urinate / defecate onto a screened patio… 

    In my view, they should be culled / controled / eliminated, take your pick!

    They are prolific breeders and delaying the introduction of control measures can only make the situation worse before it gets better.

  8. Buffy says:

    I catch the young ones tin my yard and then release them in West Bay.  It is my little payback for them giving us Mac.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Looks like Makkie may be wearing a lizard skin coat to his big meetings abroad instead of his beautiful agouti skin outer-wear. oh well, the only thing certain is change.

  10. I. Blue says:

    The sensible thing to do with green iguanas is to show the locals that there is no difference between iguana meat and turtle meat. They are both reptiles and their edible parts are pretty similar.

    Once an appetite develops we can have proper farming of green iguana meat (initially by capturing the wild population and thereafter by breeding) and the turtle population will be saved.

    Given a choice between (i) good meat from properly farmed, fed and cleaned land reptiles and (ii) poor quality meat from deformed, pellet fed, swimming reptiles, in time the locals will choose the former and the problem of wild green iguanas will go away.

    If people are willing to open their minds, their mouths will follow.


    • Anonymous says:

      Eat Iguanas – Yes


      However, the same people (WSPA) who object to the Turtle Farm object to the farming of any non-traditional animals. So if iguana farming got as visible here as the Turtle Farm then they'd be objecting to that too.


      Also, what do you think a commercial farm would feed their stock, be they chickens, turtles or iguanas? Processed pelleted feed. Its more economic/efficient. Also, you don't waste space; again, look at the poultry industry. (Unless you're going 'free range', which is such a small portion of the market that it just proves that people want their meat housed as economically as possible.) So the fact that iguanas live on land doesn't mean that they can't be housed in 'too small' a cage for farming purposes, just like turtles swiming in a farm tank. As for the deformities, no one cares what the animal lookks like before its butchered. Lots of animals that wouldn't survive in the wild – because they'd be eaten young – grow to slaughter size in farms. Because its worth the cost to rear them despite their deformities. (Or the farmers just have a soft spot and don't like to see animals killed 'uselessly'.)


      So, other than your original premise, you're basically completely wrong.

    • Anonymous says:

      Wh is it all about the locals? Why not sell it to the tourists as a delicacy?

    • Anonymous says:

       Snare the things and chop the head off. end of story,

  11. Anonymous says:

    When the government should've stopped the Pet Shops from bring them in, it wasn't done.   They were bought for children, who got tired of having them after they had grown too big for them to handle and play with.  They let them loose and they mutiplied.   The pet shops should have to assit with the re-capturing and or culling of them.

    Make sure to eradicate them from your properties, they are an nusiance and a pest.

    • Anonymous says:

      The same thing is happening with hampsters…they are ALL OVER snug harbour now!

    • Anonymous says:

      The government should have put proper rules and regulations into the importation of these animals but like every thing they wait until it has become a problem. Wait until the Iguanas start screaming about their humanrights, resdency and citizenship and natural rights

  12. Anonymous says:

    Thats why I kill them all when i catch them…My dogs love to eat them…

  13. Anonymous says:

    First there was one green iguana, nobody was concerned. Then there were two. They soon found each other and then there were many. They eat our vegetation, not our children. First there was one crocodile……………………………….What will get they be eating.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Yeah kill dem expat iguanas! Takin al dose nice blue iguanas’ jobs and dey womenfolk too.

  15. Anonymous says:

    The Spaniards are the only predator they have lol! We need to white them & the lion fish out!


  16. Anonymous says:

    Humane control should be a priority. These animals are here because people brought them, and should not be made to suffer unnecessarily during the much-needed culling that must happen. 

    The Cayman Turtle Farm should adapt their butchering department to process green iguana meat instead of turtles – thus solving their embarassing public relations problems with internatiional animal protection agencies. 

    Green iguana meat, like Lionfish, is an environmentally sound choice. 


    • Anonymous says:

      I am re-thinking introducing monkeys to the island. Now I'm sure it's a good idea….. as iguana control!

      • R.U. Kidden says:

        Monkeys?  We can't do that.  They would all gravitate to CIG.

    • Anonymous says:

      more lizzards bigger snakes,let get some BOAZs from florida to eat the lizzards..

  17. PHD says:

    I have been doing a similar study, daily, for years.

    Every time I looked out the kitchen window, I can see them up in the trees eating my fruit or digging holes in the backyard.

    So, as a local scientist, I concur with my international colleagues.

    I’ve implemented my own eradication programme, but it is expensive.

    It’s costing me about 20 dollars more, per week, in gas.