Yadua Taba Research Update 2014

Report submitted by Peter Harlow, Taronga Conservation Society, Australia


Bracyhlophus_Vitiensis_YaduaTaba_telescoping_capture_pole_PeterHarlowIn June 2014, an international research team spent six nights on the Yadua Taba Crested Iguana Sanctuary Island, and captured, marked, and released 194 iguanas in the quarter-hectare long-term study site. Thirty-five percent of these iguanas were recaptures from previous years, some originally marked by Suzie Morrison in 2005. The high density of Crested Iguanas on this single predator-free island is remarkable, and no other island in Fiji has such a dense population of iguanas. In addition, botanist Dr. Jenifer Taylor and her team re-measured and re-tagged all 591 trees that had been previously tagged in this study, giving us nine years of data on growth rates, attrition, and recruitment of four food-tree species known to be important in the diet of the herbivorous Crested Iguana.