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Iguana scare

Dawn Gibson
Thursday, March 06, 2014

AS of September last year, there have been worrying sightings of the notorious American iguana in a village on Qamea Island — a place where the species has never been sighted before.

This was confirmed by NatureFiji-MareqetiViti, which noted that the sightings were in Dreketi Village located at the southeast end of Qamea.

Qamea is one of a handful of islands in Fiji where the American iguana breeds and in September last year, when the villagers found 11 females, there were a total of 193 eggs between them.

"With no natural predators, the American iguana population continues to grow exponentially after its introduction in 2000," said Tuverea Tuamoto in an article on the NatureFiji-MareqetiViti (NFMV) website.

"There have been new sightings in Dreketi Village located at the southeast end of Qamea Island, an area where this species has never been sighted or recorded before."

Mr Tuamoto said this showed a potential increase in the invasive species' population.

"Biosecurity Authority of Fiji (BAF) together with NFMV launched the bounty for the American iguana in Taveuni with a captured adult valued at $10, $5 for juvenile and 50c for an American iguana egg.

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