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Iguana surveillance continues

Luke Rawalai
Monday, February 05, 2018

THE Biosecurity Authority of Fiji will continue with the surveillance of the Giant Invasive Iguana (GII) on Taveuni.

Responding to questions from this newspaper, the authority in a statement said that taskforce teams were carrying out surveillance and awareness in the villages on the island.

In response to queries that the reptile had been sighted in new locations around the country, the statement said there were no reports to date.

"There has been no report of GII findings in new territories," the statement said.

"It is only present on Qamea, Matagi, Laucala and Taveuni islands."

However, in April last year, the authority had revealed that a GII was discovered in Savusavu and had been culled and returned to Qamea.

The authority said then that it was alerted of the new GII sighting by local fishermen on a beach at the base of Natewa Bay, approximately 20 kilometres from Savusavu Town.

It had stated that a team then conducted a thorough survey of the area and visited local villages to conduct awareness.

In 2011, the then permanent secretary for Agriculture, Colonel Mason Smith, said there were possibilities of the reptile swimming to Buca Bay following a sighting on 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.

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