March 2007 Release

On 9 March, 18 (9 males, 9 females) headstarted Jamaican Iguanas, Cyclura collei, were reintroduced into their native Hellshire Hills in southeastern Jamaica as part of the recovery plan for this species. These releases bring the number of iguana reintroduced since 1996 to 85. All iguanas were headstarted at the Hope Zoo in Kingston, and ranged in age from 5.5 to 13.5 years. Prior to release, a veterinary team from the Fort Worth Zoo’s Animal Health Department performed health-screening exams on the iguanas to certify them healthy for return to the wild. Rick Hudson (Fort Worth Zoo) and Tandora Grant (San Diego Zoo) participated in the actual release, making sure that the iguanas were transported safely into the field and that all records and identification methods were in place. This recovery program is a collaborative effort between the University of West Indies and the Hope Zoo in Kingston, and the Fort Worth-based International Iguana Foundation (IIF) that supports this program.