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Ctenosaura bakeri monitoring

The Bay Islands Marine Park, located in Utila in the Bay Islands department and is characterized by having an immense amount of reefs, marine biodiversity, is also characterized by being covered with mangrove forest with wetlands that develop in salt water or freshwater and endemic species among the most important is the black iguana (Stephen et al., 2009). The black iguana (Ctenosaura Bakeri), is one of the endemic species of Utila, this species lives only in the mangrove, which covers 8 to 10 km2 (25%) of the totality of the island. This iguana has been affected as in previous years it was considered as one of the species with low population, this due to the strong illegal hunting and the destruction of its habitat.

The Bay Islands Foundation through Iguana Station project has taken as part of its research programs to monitor the black iguana (Ctenosaura Bakeri) and reproduction of this species that is done within the station with breeding in captivity, this in order to protect, conserve and increase the population of this species and in the same way prevent it from dying over time. On the other hand, make awareness to the inhabitants of the island the importance of this species and the value it has to protect the fauna of Utila.

To make this work a success it is necessary to monitor the population distribution of this type of iguana by doing monthly tours to three points of the areas: Western Path (WP), Oyster Bed (OB) and Big Bight (BB), where their ecosystem or habitat are being altered, either by economic interests as well as for their own benefit. This research focuses on the collection of data taken in each established area, so monthly monitoring is performed in each assigned region and the comparison and analysis of the results. The format details the metric morphic data for each iguana that is captured: body mass (BM), snout length to sewer (SVL) and the length of the sewer to tail tip (TL); it also notes the height (in the mangrove or tree) they were in, the start time and the end of the monitoring.

Eco-leaders as volunteers in the monitoring.
Supervising each species.
Successful monitoring, wonderful job.

Published by Iguana Research & Breeding Station

The Iguana Research & Breeding Station is a project of the Bay Islands Foundation, a non-profit grassroots organization dedicated for the conservation and research of the fragile species and ecosystems of Honduras.

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