Thursday, December 2, 2021
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RATS TO BE REMOVED FROM FRIGATE ISLAND

The second phase of the “Protecting Ashton Lagoon’s Biodiversity through the Eradication of Invasive Species” project, is set to begin soon.

This as St. Vincent and the Grenadines Environment Fund (SVGEF) has awarded SusGren a sum of US$19,358.89 to fund this phase of the project.

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Work will focus on eradicating the rat population that threatens to overrun Frigate Island, a small island in the Southern Grenadines connected to Union Island by the Ashton Lagoon causeway, and is under the administration of the SVG National Trust.

As part of this phase of the project, locals are expected to be trained in species removal methodology and basic biodiversity monitoring, e.g. identiafication of fauna and flora which is under threat.

On being trained, the locals will work alongside an expert in carrying out the actual removal of species (of rats).

 It has been noted that Frigate Island was a very important habitat for nesting Barn Owls but they have not been recorded on the island in more than a decade.

In an effort to re-attract species like the Barn Owl, no rodenticides will be used in the removal exercise.  Techniques, instead, will involve the use of box traps to catch and remove the rodents from the island. 

The project will also include biodiversity data collection and the erection of information signs.

In a statement to introduce this collaboration, the SVGEF said it was proud to be associated with SusGren and the SVG National Trust in the preservation of Frigate Island. 

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