(CNS): The Department of Environment says more than 53,000 green iguanas were culled during the first week of this year’s island-wide cull, which is almost double the 28,985 bagged during the underfunded and limited efforts last year, demonstrating that this time the research has paid off. DoE Terrestrial Resources Unit Manager Fred Burton said improvements in payment arrangements and a higher bounty for each iguana has substantially increased interest. “It’s been a great effort so far, but we would expect the daily numbers to decline somewhat from here as the green iguanas get a bit harder to find,” he said.
Nine days into the cull (6 November), more than 67,000 iguanas had been killed, according to figures supplied by the DoE. As cullers stay committed to their targets, the department is reminding all those involved they must work within the limits of local law.
“Unless a culler has been specifically authorised to do so via their culling agreement, green iguana heads will no longer be accepted for payment at the George Town landfill site following a number of incidents where headless carcasses were irresponsibly discarded,” officials said.
Registration with the DoE does not allow cullers to trespass on private property, nor does registration permit the use of an air rifle unless the person has been licensed to do so by the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service.
The DoE stressed that, under their contract terms, cullers must abide by the conditions of their air rifle licences and adhere to the instructions provided regarding humane treatment of animals being culled. Failure to follow the law or cull rules may result in having a registration pulled, which means a culler will no longer be eligible to participate in the programme.