DoE to host workshop on future invasions

| 21/05/2018 | 11 Comments
Invasive green iguana in the Cayman Islands

Invasive green iguana

(CNS): Well aware of the devastating impact invasive species can have on indigenous flora and fauna, the Department of Environment will be hosting a workshop next week on how to prevent potential future invasions that may be on the horizon. Conservationists from other British Overseas Territories will join staff from the Cayman Islands DoE to listen to advice from other professionals from the UK and Europe on the work being done around the world in an effort to protect unique habitat from invasive threats.

Cayman knows only too well the massive problems presented by the unwelcome arrival of non-native species, from the threats to our marine environment posed by the pernicious lionfish to the prolific green iguana on land. While those two species are the most talked about here, the Cayman Islands, like other islands, are faced with many other threats from invasive plant species and pests that are attacking the local flora.

Fred Burton, head of the DoE Terrestrial Unit, told CNS that the “Horizon workshop” was about looking ahead at what other dangers are out there that we should know about and try to protect the Cayman Islands from and how best to combat potential future invasions.

He explained that protecting our shores from pests large and small required a coordinated effort between a number of agencies. He said the DoE hopes this workshop will help Cayman and the other BOTs that will be attending come up with ideas about how to coordinate the defences.

Burton said species invasion is a significant and growing problem in the modern world that can be really challenging to deal with, so having some idea of what we could face in the future and how others have dealt with it may prevent a repeat of what has happened with the existing invasions.

As evidenced by the situation with the lionfish, the iguanas and various species of plants, once an invasive species finds a new location to its liking, it can quickly make itself at home and become an unwanted but permanent guest.

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Category: Land Habitat, Marine Environment, Science & Nature

Comments (11)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Spend the damn money on preserving our indigenous marine and wildlife first, this naive attempt at culling green iguanas is futile and a waste of the funds that should be used to stop poaching, over fishing and the disgraceful behaviour of some commercial boats on the Sandbar. How many of them have permits? Where are the officers and the boats. Nah sa, that money needs to be spent on enforcing the laws first, not being used to line the pockets of a few hopeless hunters. Of course invasive species are a threat but it’s too late and uneconomical to waste public money on the pesky GI when more are killed on the road or by dogs than will ever be culled by those idiots. A better option would be for private enterprise to hunt and process the GI for domestic and exported food with no cost to the public purse. I understand such a company does exist but has been refused permissions due to a technicality that sounds more like an excuse than a reasoned argument. Let the private sector pick up where you have catastrophically failed. Isnt it the work of border protection, (Customs) to deal with the illegal importation of invasive species? Isn’t pest control a DEH/Agriculture problem to solve?
    Perhaps a freedom of information request is needed to find out where this money is going and why it’s not being spent on trying to save our environmental heritage from criminals who are destroying our children’s future.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Import gray foxes from South Florida, that will balance both the iguana and chicken over population. (Foxes love eggs and chickens). If you think you will sort this out with legistlation and a bunch of pellet rifles, you are highly disillusioned. Also why is no one referring to the *chicken* infestation? To me they create more nusiance and property damage than any iguana.

    Iguana is also very edible, popularize it as a Cayman disk like lionfish. Surely top chef’s around the island can get very creative with this. You telling me iguana is any stranger than turtle?

    • Anonymous says:

      2:33 With all due respect, importing another pest will only make matters worse. The Grey fox may indeed control some of the green iguana population but it will also be detrimental to our local wildlife e.g.. Blue iguanas, baby crabs, turtle hatchlings, young birds (especially young booby birds), Lizards, and many more. Sooner or later there would then be a bounty on the foxes!
      As for the culinary part of it. There are a few restaurants on island that serve it and believe me not everyone fancies it!
      With over a million plus green iguanas and the population almost doubling every year and Caymans tiny population of 60,000 that’s alot of iguana for breakfast, lunch and dinner!
      This whole situation could have easily been managed had DOE payed attention to the population explosion back in 03-04 when the numbers were much less.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Have you considered the possibility that maybe the ‘money people’ aren’t out to get you and maybe you are indeed a ‘fruitcake’?

  4. Anonymous says:

    They forgot to include the biggest invader – Dartus Billionaris

  5. Anonymous says:

    Loosen up on air rifle ownership….for flips sake!

  6. Anonymous says:

    You could’nt make this Sh— up!

    What a bunch.

    Gyal try so do something effective with these green iguanas, wild chicken, lionfish

  7. Anonymous says:

    Um, okay, this would be fine if it was a sidebar to an impressive, well-funded, results-achieving act to clean up our roads, gardens and reefs of pests programmed to destroy everything we need to continue attracting prosperity to our islands. You know, the ones we’ve already identified? (I identified some iguana on my car this morning). BUT IT ISN’T! It’s another hand-rubbing “workshop” where they all go ‘well it’s all very serious…what to do?’ I look forward to the comprehensive management plans for all potential invasive risks resulting from this unnecessary distraction from two huge threats that are already here.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Genetically modified aberrations are still in their infancy, “Far Eastern” lionfish, “Green” (environmentally friendly?) iguanas, mosquitoes, “farm reared” salmon, “Spanish” slugs, “Chinese” wasps, “African” killer bees ad nauseam.
    These monstrosities did not even exist a generation ago.
    What’s next? Let me guess, “Liberian” locusts?

    Here is the newsflash, “France is being overrun by Liberian locusts. We have never heard of them before we spliced their genes in our labs, but we just wanted to fool you all into thinking that they have always existed because none of you poor bastards have ever been to Liberia. Oh and just because we put it into our “respected” publication, you need to believe it or you will be ostracized from society as an utter fruitcake.”

    Funny how the elites give these beasts a name that implies that they migrated from some distant country when they never even existed in those countries? Oh yes, I forgot the bit where they broke out of the aquarium, got flushed down the toilet and survived as much bullshit as we are expected to swallow.

    For God’s sake people, wake up. If all you think all you are is a dumb machine that does mundane jobs to acquire pieces of paper with silly faces on them, then I would say you deserve everything you get.

    We are the victims of some shocking deception.

    Here come the money people with their “tin foil” hat shit.
    You people need to get a life and wake up, because unless we all wake up we are screwed.

    • Anonymous says:

      Why the heck don’t the gov let them go to the field at john gray when the kids are not there ,they are there by the houndreds look like .how else do we expect to control them if we’re not hitting the main areas .?

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