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Population Assessments and Conservation Genetics Analyses of Fijian Iguanas

Conservation of Fijian Iguanas

Recent genetic and morphological research on Fijian Iguanas (genus Brachylophus) has described a third living species in the genus. Our field work discovered an additional new species in the northern islands and additional populations of iguanas with no clear species status The only protected and secure population of any Pacific iguana is on the tiny Crested Iguana Sanctuary island of Yadua Taba, administered by the National Trust for Fiji.  Over 500 iguanas have now been PIT tagged in a forest patch of only ¼ hectare.  As well as population dynamics, these tagged iguanas have provided the first data on diet, reproduction, growth, movement and longevity for any Pacific iguana.  All 600 trees in the study site have also been permanently measured and tagged, and are giving us the first data on growth rates of the important food tree species for these leaf-eating, herbivorous iguanas. 

Project Partners:

Taronga: Dr Peter Harlow
United States Geological Survey: Dr Robert Fisher
National Trust of Fiji Islands: Elizabeth Erasito, Jone Niukula
San Diego Zoo's Institute for Conservation Research: Dr Heidi Davis 

For more information contact:

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