Increasing the Effectiveness and Output of Two Cyclura Headstart Programs Through Increased Oversight, (Cyclura collei and Cyclura pinguis)
Michael Fouraker and Kelly Bradley
The IIF has provided funding for headstart programs for the Jamaican (C. collei) and the Anegada Iguana (C. pinguis) since 2003. Headstarting hatchling iguanas provides them with protected growth time until they are large enough to avoid predation whereby they have a higher rate of survival following release. Increased oversight will address some of the lingering issues that have reduced the effectiveness of these program historically. It is the goal of this grant to increase the number of animals available for release by 30-50% by shortening their time in captivity and improving their growth rates and survival.
Provides funding to continue this long-running field program and ensures that the primary field biologist, Rick Van Veen, remains on salary and working in Hellshire. Rick’s ongoing conservation activities include predator control, protection of nesting sites, research on ecology and habitat requirements of the iguana, monitoring released iguanas, (16 in 2005) and radio-tracking hatchling iguanas.
Funding for this ongoing field program will provide annual operating costs for the recovery efforts including protection of nest sites, monitoring of nesting females, collection of hatchlings for headstarting, and continued surveys and monitoring of the Hellshire Hills. These funds were held over from 2002.
A $15,000 IIF grant was awarded to Peter Vogel and the Jamaican Iguana Conservation and Research Group for yearly operating expenses for the ongoing field research and recovery program. Previously in 2002 the IIF had awarded $6,500 to Byron Wilson of the Jamaican Iguana Conservation and Research Group to continue his ongoing assessment, now in its 5th year, of the mongoose removal program in the Hellshire Hills.