Cullers remove 40,000 greens in 4 days

| 02/11/2018 | 101 Comments
Cayman News Service

Green iguana at the golf course, Grand Cayman

(CNS): The green iguana cull on Grand Cayman appears to have got off to a good start, with registered cullers having killed more than 40,000 in the first four days of the project. The Department of Environment has a target of 6,000 iguanas per day, and with more than 300 people and businesses involved in the cull, the numbers during the first week have easily exceeded that target. However, the key to the project’s success is ensuring that the cullers remain committed to the gruelling and gruesome task.

On the first official day of the cull 13,819 dead iguanas were taken to the official counting and disposal station at the dump. Since then, cullers have been bringing in thousands more every day, with numbers remaining well above the daily target. By Thursday evening, the official count was at 40,379.

But with an estimated 1.6 million invasive iguanas on Grand Cayman, the cullers will need to keep up the pace over the next twelve months to ensure that the investment government is making to create a nationwide cull achieves its goal of sufficiently reducing the population ahead of the breeding season to prevent another population explosion.

The green iguana cull, which was open to all Caymanians over the age of 18, is vital for the environment but is tough work. However, the first week indicated that the cullers engaged in the project understand that the quotas need to be met, encouraged by the bounty of $5 per iguana.

The DoE is currently providing daily updates of the numbers of iguanas culled on its website here.

The department has also published the list of registered cullers and their contact details so that property owners can contact individuals and invite them to remove iguanas from their land.

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Category: Land Habitat, Science & Nature

Comments (101)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Can we keep the gay ones? They’re not doing any harm.

  2. Anonymous says:

    4:07pm and 6:12pmThe public talk is it sounds like environmental health internal audit of abused over-time money spending and some staff were indentified thst received unbelievable eye soaring salary pay-outs and it were stated by the chief officer for health in a audit report that were released to the public on October 1, 2018 that a investigation is still going on into the matter and not DOE that you all are talking about. The public talk is 4:07pm and 6:12pm do your homework by checking who is the chief officer for DOE. The public talk is and when you all get the answer that should tell you all what time it is with the iguana culling. The public talk is when you all finish your homework you all must get back to CNS and post your comments with the correct information ASAP.

    • Anonymous says:

      I’m not even going to read your comment because I don’t want to go through and find the other comments just to figure out what you’re talking about. Reply to the original comments.

    • Anonymous says:


  3. Anonymous says:

    After all the easy targets are gone and it takes all day to get only a few iguanas, the cull will die. The iguanas in the bush won’t stop and in a couple of breeding seasons the iguanas will be back in full force. This is going to be a long term problem. The cull is a band aid. The gov needs to come up with an eradication strategy or at least a phase 2 plan after the cullers don’t find the current plan worth while any longer.

    • Anonymous says:

      I know they make a mess and eat gardens etc., but killing any type of animal just to kill them makes me sad.

  4. Anonymous says:

    There’s another opportunity to make money on the iguanas. Use them as fish bait.

  5. Annonymous says:

    A question for DOE or for Mr. Fred Burton. I have just culled 19 in my yard. There are some huge one in my neighbors yard and I suggested to her that I would give $1 for every iguana I remove from her property. She said no way, those iguanas are her pets! So if I rid my property of these pests and she has the breeding ground, How will we ever rid the islands of these animals if there are people with this mindset? Will the cull be on indefinitely and if so, I might as well breed them and then cull them to make money.

    • Anonymous says:

      Just like locals won’t spay or neuter their cats and dogs. Some people are just ignorant nutjobs. Wait till they cross into your yard, or bait them to your yard?

    • Anonymous says:

      Wait for them to cross the fence line. They’ll do it naturally when they see no iguanas in your nice yard/habitat. These initial culls will deliberately or otherwise target ‘high appeal’ areas that, once cleared out, will refill with iguanas over time allowing re-hunting the same area.

      Yes, the problem is that at some point the overall numbers drop lower than the replenishment rate of these good hunting spots. Then something different will be needed. But that’s next year’s problem. (Literally int his case given that its now November.)

  6. Peter slice says:

    In colonial India the British offered the Indians money to cull the snakes….. The Indians started breeding the snakes…. How long before some fool starts purposely breeding the green iguanas?

  7. Anonymous says:

    Seems we are suffering from reptile dysfunction

  8. Anonymous says:

    Keep up the good work cullers. Those of us that understand the impact of the invasive green iguanas appreciate your work.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Something is fishy. It is impossible to kill so many in 4 days. Do simple math. 10,000 a day/ number of cullers.
    Unless iguanas had lined up patiently waiting to be killed. Even then there’s a limit to how many a person can strike before his hand goes “out of order”. It takes days for overworked muscles to get restored.
    I smell some elaborate schemes.

    • Anonymous says:

      They knew it was happening. They started the cull way before open season. The numbers will either level out or they will find out that people started to breed them just for money.

    • Anonymous says:

      Cullers started early. However pests still dead so what’s the big deal?

    • Anonymous says:

      I don’t know how many people involved in counting dead iguanas . But lets say it takes at least one second to count one iguana. 60 per minute or 360 per hour. Multiple by 8 work hours, it comes to 2,880 per day per person. But nobody works like a machine 8 hours a day without stopping. But lets ignore this fir now. Divide 40,000 by 2,880, it comes to at least 4 people counting iguanas non stop for 8 hours a day.
      The question is, how many people were actually counting iguanas?

      I also don’t know how many iguanas pet hour a person can possibly, theoretically, physically, spot and kill. Then he must load them into his vehicle and drive to the Dump. At the Dump, the Dump counters are working as machines, so a cullers must wait until it is his turn. But lets assume
      (wild guess) it takes an hour to kill 30 iguanas. Times 6 (hours worked per day), 180 per one cullers per day, times 4=720.
      So it would take 55 cullers to kill 40000 iguanas in 4 days if each works 6hours a day non stop and kills 30 iguanas per hour.
      Now, the question is, how many iguanas per hour can be possibly killed by one person?

      Once we know the answers to the above 2 questions, we would know if was possible to kill and count 40,000+ dead iguanas in 4 days.

      • Anonymous says:

        1. To count 40000 dead animals in 4 days would take more than 4-5 people
        2. 5-7 iguanas per hour is more realistic. 30-40 per day at most.
        Before testing controls, auditors do analytical work. The numbers must make sense.
        DOE has disbursements records, therefore it won’t be hard to identify fraud.
        Cullers could have had unregistered helpers; that would increase the number
        of culled animals.
        So cullers have to do some math before bringing a ” reasonable” number of culled iguanas without raising a suspicion.
        This also has to correspond with the number of people who are physically able to count all culled iguanas.
        If numbers don’t make sense, start investigating. It has to be done sooner than later.

    • Anonymous says:

      yep…the maths don’t add up….and we all know the civil service can’t add 2+2…..

      • Anonymous says:

        6:12. The private sector was awarded the job to count the iguanas. I know the private sector seems to be falling behind the civil service in innovation but the private sector company shoul be able to get this right

    • Anonymous says:

      6:41. If this is your response after reading this article I strongly suggest a mental health break.

      The answer is simple and obvious some cullers had been culling for many days before the cull started.

      Seriously you need help. I bet you are the same poster who said the Governor only job is to sit in the L.A.

  10. Anonymous says:

    I kind of doubt. Is it even possible? 10,000 a day? Who is counting? And who is overseeing it?

  11. chadowick says:

    Soon the government will have
    It to say…we have a hybrid in the lab

  12. chadowick says:

    Keep culling while I’m trying to find ways to sponsor the government funding of environmental.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Some of the people on the cullers’ list are very dodgy indeed. Others are active civil servants so lets hope they only do the culling in their own time and not government’s which we are already paying them for.

    • Anonymous says:

      Extensive criminal records for some.

      • Anonymous says:

        Great! Let’s give them air riffles!

        Trust me, something bad is going to happen after the money slows down.

    • Anonymous says:

      Doe worst offender. They got employee who run property business on government time and on government truck and nobody say s##t.
      So killing iggy’s nah gonna change a ting on the civil service gravy train.

    • Anonymous says:

      Typical crab in the bucket mentality!

  14. Anonymous says:

    How about shooting some rosters for target practice?

    • John says:

      Why doesn’t the Government Offer a Guided green Aguana Hunt for a fee? I have paid $100 per day with no limit in El Salvador and Guatemala a few years ago when they had the problem. The Government could collect a License fee for the Privilege and some Entrepreneurs could collect a day rate then collect the reward by turning in the Cull.

      • Anonymous says:

        Only is cayman do they pay the hunters who want to do this anyway.

      • Anonymous says:

        Why doesn’t someone in the private sector. Why don’t you? Why does everyone expect the Government to do everything for them all the time?

    • Anonymous says:

      dont ask awkward questions!

  15. Anonymous says:

    talk bout bad luck! carma

  16. Anonymous says:

    Been killing them myself for years, part of your civic duty in my mind, like voting and jury duty
    Even trained my dogs to hunt them, in trees or when I knock them out of the trees
    Too many Caymanians complain about issues and don’t do anything about them unless they are getting paid for it
    If everyone of us had been killing a couple a week from the time we noticed the problem we wouldn’t need to be paying out an exorbitant amount of money now to get the job done

    • Anonymous says:

      Some of us couldn’t imagine killing any living thing. Doesn’t mean we think they should continue on, just means we can’t do it personally and hope it’s being carried out humanely.

    • Anonymous says:

      Did you also train your dogs to tell the difference between an endangered blue iguana and a green one?

    • Anonymous says:

      Self praise is no recommendation sir, and the only reason why you have been killing them for so many years is because of your own selfish wants, like keeping them off your own property, so don’t sit there and type your BS like you have been doing your part for the Cayman islands.
      Bad mind is a serious disease among people like you and if there is a chance for caymanians to collect a good money for doing a hard days work while doing something productive for the island then so let it be.
      Why don’t you continue to work your profession voluntarily and make the proceeds go towards some charity if that is how you feel about this whole situation, or are you just mad and bad minded that caymanians can collect a bigger pay cheque than you will ever accomplish.

    • Anonymous says:

      This is very true. I have done the same thing with my dogs, they kill then and then bury them. We should have done this sooner they are catching many with eggs. We have another problem just as bad The bloody CHICKENS. They are eating our fruit and we can’t keep any plants. I hope this is not left as the iguanas.

    • Anonymous says:

      Not everyone is an executioner!

  17. Tom says:

    I could start breeding iguanas on farm….breed 40,000 a year…easy money!

  18. Anonymous says:

    perhaps an extra bounty should be given for females?…eliminate the females and the problem goes away….

    • Anonymous says:

      Eliminate the males and the problem also goes away. What a dumb comment.

      • Anonymous says:

        would you like 9 females and 1 male or 1 female and 9 males….?
        not so dumb…..

      • Anonymous says:

        Not quite the same, you don’t need as many males as females for all the females to keep breeding. You only need enough males to mate with all the females. You would have to eliminate all the males whereas eliminating most of the females eliminates most of the breeding capability. But don’t let that get in the way of your feminist iguana agenda.

    • Anonymous says:

      Virgin level 1000

    • Anonymous says:

      How to you propose to go after females? I can’t tell a difference just by looking at them. So you think you should catch them, examine them to see if they are female, and then kill them is the way to go? I hope you don’t use that kind of mindless productivity at your place of work.

  19. No State Citizen says:

    Where has the money come from to pay for these cullers?
    For every one they catch, 20 more are born.
    I know something must be done but this seems like a futile exercise and just a chance for some people to make some extra cash before Christmas.

    • Anonymous says:

      This is a yearlong commitment, not a christmas cash grab
      The money is coming from the government budget just as any other expenses in regards to the government are paid
      The point of the culling is not to completely eliminate Greens, but it is meant to slow down their growth
      For every one they catch that is one more iguana that isn’t laying 20-70 eggs, if you cant see the benefit that kind of intervention can have might I suggest trying to wrap your mind around the idea of exponential growth

    • Anonymous says:

      What do you suggest we do then?

  20. Anonymous says:

    The irony will be histerycal when the goverment then spends another 7 million to protect the “endangered” green iguanas.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Some Cullers aren’t capturing or killing the Iguanas humanely. I’ve witnessed cullers using hook sticks to pull them out of trees, cracking their skulls then standing on their necks mean while the iguana is still alive, tossed in a bucket still breathing and moving. Also illegal homemade air rifles

    • Anonymous says:

      Some people are sick in the head.

    • Anonymous says:

      “illegal homemade air rifles” – call the police

      ‘bashed on head, still moving’ – bashing on head is a relatively humane way to kill something (if bashed hard enough to smash the brain) even if the body (nerves) keep twitching long after the brain is too dead to feel pain. – Killing is never pretty but sometimes ugly is the most humane way to go.

      • Anonymous says:

        Ever seen one lose a tail? The thing will wiggle on its own for a good 10-30 seconds. Simple biochemistry.

    • Lomart says:

      Can someone explain how to kill anything “humanely “. Please, I really need to know. How do you kill a fish humanely? Or a chicken; or a person? I really don’t know and would like to.

      • Anonymous says:

        Have you heard of torture? Just don’t do that.

      • Anonymous says:

        In the case of the green iguanas, either a headshot with a pellet from an air rifle, or if the greens are noosed, then a knife to the brain/spinal column. Quick and humane.

        Chickens, I usually chop their heads off.

        You will have to figure out people for yourself. I realise that was a rhetorical question.

        In this context, “humanely” means quickly as is possible, with a minimum of suffering. It means making certain the creature is dead before tossing it into a carry bag.

    • Anonymous says:

      So you might have a problem of how we kill conch here then I assume.

  22. Anonymous says:

    Replying to the Ruined Gardener. The registered cullers using air rifles must wait until the police has approved an amendment to their firearm licenses before they are able to shoot in residential neighbourhoods. The police has all the names of registered cullers who must apply for an amendment to their licenses and it looks like the police is slow/inundated with requests to issue these permits. Until then, responsible air rifle cullers are unable to assist you with your problem. The news papers will or are going to advertise the name of registered cullers for you to make contact with someone to come by your house.

    CNS: There is a link to the list of cullers at the end of this article.

  23. Anonymous says:

    A lot around prospect area, Lakes @ Poindexter homes and in the mangroves around there, big ones too , Also Coconut village and all surrounding area you can get 40K in just one day I am sure. Keep it up looking good.

  24. ruined gardner says:

    Cullers inflate your pockest by visiting South Church St and Phelan Cl in particular. We have plenty iguanas round here but not a single culler.

  25. The Stig says:

    How many came from the farms?

  26. Anonymous says:

    When will the first headless iguana float to Rum Point?

    • Anonymous says:

      From where? You think they’re going to float there from West Bay against the prevailing winds and currents? Get a grip.

      • Anonymous says:

        Hey genius, how do you think they got over to NS in the first place?
        I can tell you now that many swam across. You can see them in the North Sound moving slowly against time and tide, and often walking up the beaches of Rum Point, Starfish Point and Kaibo after their long swim.
        And a NW wind will certainly bring them dead or alive.

        • Anonymous says:

          If I see any headless iguanas swimming across the North Sound I’m packing my bags and leaving this God forsaken island!!

          • Anonymous says:

            Good we don’t need you here anyways, like the green iguana.

            • Anonymous says:

              We don’t need your nasty attitude either. People have questions and concerns. This is brand new to some people, the very idea of killing green iguanas. It is expected that there will be growing pains until the culling process is familiar to everyone.

              Consider being considerate and contributing a worthy comment, instead of hateful drivel.

    • Anonymous says:

      This weekend, hope my boat engine gets destroyed by a barrage of iguana heads.

    • Anonymous says:

      10:29 How many will be floating amongst the Stingrays at Stingray City?
      How many could end up on the shore of Starfish Beach?
      1 would be too many…

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