Friday, April 21, 2017

The American iguana pest

We don't want this American iguana pest in Vanua Levu!  But apparently one (or more) have swum over to Vanua Levu. Some silly tourist brought some American iguana to Qamea Island and now they have spread to parts of Taveuni and even swum to Koro Island!  Not happy at all!

American iguana culled

Luke Rawalai
Saturday, April 22, 2017
AN American Iguana commonly known as the Giant Invasive Iguana (GII) discovered in Savusavu has been culled and returned to Qamea by the Biosecurity Authority of Fiji (BAF).
The authority confirmed this after the iguana was first sighted in Qamea in 2000 and the neighbouring Laucala, Matagi and Taveuni islands by 2009.
A statement from the authority yesterday said this was the first time GII had been found anywhere on Vanua Levu.
"It is unclear at this stage how the GII made its way to Natewa Bay, Savusavu," the statement said.
"There is a possibility that GIIs were involuntarily assisted across the sea during tropical cyclone Winston.
"Although GII is an arboreal lizard, it has the ability to dive into the sea to escape predators and swim long distances."
The authority said it was alerted of the new GII sighting by local fishermen at a beach situated at the base of Natewa Bay approximately 20 kilometres from Savusavu Town.
"BAF responded swiftly and deployed its GII surveillance and awareness team for identification of the iguana and confirmed it as GII," the statement said
"The team then conducted a thorough survey of the area and visited local villages to conduct awareness. No further GIIs have been sighted in the area or areas nearby."
In 2011, the then permanent secretary for the agriculture minister, Colonel Mason Smith said there were possibilities of the reptile swimming to Buca Bay following a sighting in Koro Island.
Col Smith said then that if it could get to Koro, it could certainly get across to Buca Bay adding they were closely monitoring the situation.
However, the latest statement from the authority requested members of the public not to be alarmed, adding that the GII was primarily a herbivore.

1 comment:

Peceli and Wendy's Blog said...

They are pests in Fiji and the Fiji Biosecurity put out this article. Go to