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DOE names 14 potential invasive species

Cayman and other British Overseas Territories are looking to thwart potential threats to biodiversity.

Last week Cayman played host to a UK funded alien and invasive species ‘horizon scanning’ workshop, where OT’s compiled their own priority lists of potentially threatening species.

Coming out of last week’s workshop, the Department of Environment compiled its own list of potential invasive threats. These are species that are not yet established in the wild, but the DOE fears may arrive and become established.

They range from birds to snakes, and include certain mollusks and even some plants.

Here they are in no particular order:

  • The common boa constrictor
  • Burma reed
  • The giant African land snail
  • Mesquite,
  • Agave snout weevil
  • Asian green mussel
  • Cat’s claw vine
  • Seagrass (Halophila stipulacea)
  • Burmese python
  • Holly fern
  • Alexandrine parakeet
  • Rose-ringed parakeet
  • Red-masked conure
  • Feral goats

The DOE said species like the ubiquitous invasive green iguana and the lionfish didn’t make the list because they are already here and causing problems. This list is about what’s next.

Goats, of course, are already here, but the DOE said the risk is that some will escape their herders, start breeding in the wild, and we end up with a feral goat problem like we’ve seen in other Eastern Caribbean countries.

The DOE told Cayman 27 this list is, for now, a draft and subject to change after further assessment.

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

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