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Land Iguana Monitoring Results: Santiago and North Seymour Islands

December 2, 2020

Land iguana on Santiago

Last month, rangers from the Galapagos National Park Directorate (GNPD) conducted monitoring activities for land iguanas reintroduced to Santiago Island in 2019, and found that the iguanas had adapted to appropriate sites for their survival and are contributing to the natural restoration of this island.

Technical staff carried out monitoring activities at the Puerto Nuevo and Bucanero sites, where data on iguanas — including their burrows, excrement, possible nesting areas, juveniles and food availability — were recorded. On North Seymour Island, park rangers conducted a population census to determine the number of land iguanas there, and to record data such as sex and age. The results revealed an estimated population of 4,571 individuals on that island.

Management efforts implemented on these islands, particularly related to the control and elimination of introduced species (such as rodents in North Seymour in 2019, and pigs, donkeys and goats in Santiago in 2002 and 2006) have allowed the population of land iguanas there to thrive.

Based on a GNPD news release, translated with their permission. Photo courtesy of the GNPD.

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