History

The International Iguana Foundation was founded in August 2001 in Fort Worth, Texas, as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Formed in response to the need for consistent funding for critical iguana conservation initiatives, the IIF is composed of 12 board members representing the zoo, corporate, and private sectors. 

Jamaican Rock Iguana

Jamaican Rock Iguana

 

The IIF seeks to ensure the survival of all iguana species in the Caribbean and elsewhere, through the promotion of a broad conservation agenda involving habitat protection, education, scientific research, and captive management.  Through annual financial pledges, the IIF Board is able to generate a minimum of $50,000 USD per year to help fund ongoing field conservation and research projects in areas of critical need. At its initial founding in 2001, the IIF was focused primarily on their role in the recovery of three Critically Endangered iguanas, the Grand Cayman Blue Iguana (Cyclura lewisi), the Jamaican Iguana (Cyclura collei) and the Puerto Rican Bank or Anegada Island Iguana (Cyclura pinguis). 

Jamaican Rock Iguana

Jamaican Rock Iguana

Soon after, the IIF began funding projects for other West Indian Rock Iguana species. In 2004, a workshop was held in Fiji and the IIF recognized the need to expand its funding outside the Caribbean. In 2005, the Foundation began funding projects for Fijian Iguanas (genus Brachylophus) and Spiny-tailed Iguanas (genus Ctenosaura). Since the formation of the Foundation, the IIF has continually expanded, providing funding for a multitude of species. 

 

An article published in Herpetological Review (2006), summarizing the history and early activities of the International Iguana Foundation can be viewed here.