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Jamaica's Rare Wildlife – in pictures

Jamaica's Rare Wildlife – in pictures

Posted by Shanelle Weir on May 23, 2014

The Portland Bight protected area is home to the iconic Jamaican iguana and 20 other endangered species. Its fragile coastal ecosystem and wildlife faces the risk of being lost for ever as Jamaica approves a Chinese company to build a port.

 

The Jamaican iguaua, Cyclura collei, is a critically endangered species found in the Hellshire Hills of Portland Bight protected area, Jamaica. It was thought to have gone extinct in 1948, but in 1990, a hog hunter chanced upon a live individual in the limestone forests of Hellshire Hills. Further exploration revealed 50 survivors. Eggs and hatchlings brought from the wild were reared in captivity and released back into the wild once they are big enough to ward off predators. Photograph: Robin Moore

 

Today, Jamaican iguana remains critically endangered. It is described as the “rarest lizard in the world” and has become a flagship species for conservation in the West Indies and the focus of an international recovery programme. Since 1997, 174 Jamaican iguanas have been set free into their native Hellshire Hills habitat, and researchers have confirmed they are breeding and nesting in the wild.

Photograph: Robin Moore

This unique wetland in Hellshire Hills, will be turned into a logistitcs hub for the port Chinese firm will build in Jamaica. Conservationists say they are denied access to information about the project's framework agreement between the government of Jamaica and Chinese investors, and have therefore filed legal action requesting leave to apply for judicial review of the decisions. Photograph: Robin Moore

A yellow warbler perches delicately on vegetation on a small island in Portland Bight protected area, Jamaica. Photograph: Robin Moore

The vulunerable American crocodile has found a sanctuary in the mangroves of Portland Bight protected area. Photograph: Robin Moore

 

A coal plant spews smoke as dawn breaks over the Old Harbour Bay of Jamaica. Photograph: Robin Moore

Fishermen remove a yellowtail snapper, Ocyurus chrysurus, from their catch of the morning. The Chinese port will also affect communities who live sustainably along the Old Harbour Bay, near Portland Bight protected area. Photograph: Robin Moore

The port will also have and adverse impact on local communities and their livelihoods. Above a pelican perhes on a fishing boat as a fihserman gazes in the distance in the Old Harbour Bay. Photograph: Robin Moore

A fisherman holds a plate of fried fish served with pineapple, a traditional receipe made from food sourced locally, in the Old Harbour Bay. Photograph: Robin Moore
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