Rescuing endangered iguanas on Malolo Island
So precious and delicately-balanced is the ecosystem that supports the flora and fauna on Malolo Island in the Mamanucas, that sightings of the native Malolo Island Iguana have been a rare thing. However, guests of beautiful Malolo Island Resort might soon be lucky enough to come across one of these rare crested Brachylophus vitiensis, thanks to the fantastic initiatives of Ahura Resorts Group (Malolo Island Resort and Likuliku Lagoon Resort).
Adam Clause, a research specialist from The University of Georgia (USA), has been on the island studying, tagging and releasing the handful of endangered iguanas held for research and breeding purposes. It is hoped that the continued success of the programs will increase the native iguana populationp on the island. Adam’s work on Malol Malolo also included a detailed analysis of its trop tropical dry forest areas that are classified as on one of the most endangered ecosystems on th the planet.
Ahura Resorts’ Group general manager, St Steve Anstey, says the resort company is pr proud to be fulfilling its legal and moral re responsibility to ensure the environment is not degraded through irresponsible ac activities and practices.
““... operating in a pristine, sensitive envir environment such as ours, with ocean and coral reefsre on one side and land flora and fauna on the o other, we fully recognise the importance of sustainablesusta tourism,” he says. Happily, the commitment to the preservation of the iguanas and the forest vegetation on Malolo Island and at Malolo Island Resort is ongoing, in partnership with US Geological Survey, Taronga Zoo, San Diego Zoo Global and the Mamanuca Environmental Society.
Top: Iguanas discovered on Malolo Island are released after being tagged with a microchip. © Mamanuca Environment Society