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Iguana cullers buy and sell excess iguanas to ensure quotas are met

The hunt is on for Cayman’s other reptilian invader: the green iguana.

The Department of Environment is hoping to round up 1.4 million iguanas over the duration of the 14 month cull.

To get there, licensed cullers say they are taking it one day at a time.

“The first ones to try to get is to try to get the babies, which is easier, lower to the ground, and easier to catch,” said licensed iguana culler Chet Rivers.

Mr. Rivers used his quick hands to snatch another green iguana hatchling out of the bushes.

“A lot of them are probably hatching now, because we are finding a lot of smaller ones, so there’s a lot of more out there, there’s a lot of bigger ones, but they’re harder to reach,” said Mr. Rivers.

Mr. Rivers told Cayman 27 many adult greens are getting wise to the snare. He said he’s hoping to add a new tool to his iguana culling arsenal in the near future.

“We are going to try to get a license to be able to get air guns, which will be easier to get them up high, right now we are still using the snares,” said Mr. Rivers.

He told Cayman 27 he is still meeting his quotas the old fashioned way, with two hands.

“We gotta make 450 for the month for a quota, so if we do 25 to 30, 35 for the day, then that means we make a little bit over our quota,” he explained.

On days where he’s well in excess of his quota, he said other cullers will happily take them off his hands to make their own quotas.

“We sell a few, he pay a price, he’s going to make money back on it when he goes in, so we kind of try to help people out in that way also, and then he can return the favor for us someday if we don’t have any,” said Mr. Rivers.

And in the meantime, green iguanas better watch out for the quick hands of Chet Rivers.

According to the DOE figures through Tuesday (7 November), 74,392 green igunas have been delivered to the counting station.

The DOE said says to reach its goal of 1.4 million by the end of 2019, it’s hoping to average about 6,000 per day.

About the author

Joe Avary

Joe Avary

Joe Avary has been with Cayman 27 since 2014. He brings 20 years in television experience to the job, working hard every day to bring the people of Cayman stories that inform the public and make a difference in the community. Joe hopes his love for the Cayman Islands shines through in his informative and entertaining weather reports. If you have a story idea for Joe or just want to say hello, call him at 324-2141 or send an email to josephavary@hurleysmedia.ky

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