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Eradicate rats to achieve natural reproduction of turtles in Galapagos

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Turtles remain endemic finch reproduced in incubators and raised in captivity at the premises of the Galapagos National Park (GNP) on Santa Cruz Island, which at 4 or 5 years of age are repatriated. For almost half a century and have been returned about 665 reptiles. "We have not managed to succeed at natural breeding by the presence of rats, which we expect to change the disappearance of the main enemy of the nest," said the head of the Preservation and Restoration of Ecosystem Reserve, Christian Sevilla. The park makes efforts to eliminate rodents throughout the island province, located about 1,000 km from the coast and declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1979 by the unique flora and fauna in the world to possess.

Rats, one of the 2000 alien species on islands and considered the most destructive genres have "hundreds of years in Galapagos to be introduced in the coming days when buccaneers" said Sevilla. The aggression of the animals against the flora and fauna in the "haunted" forced archipelago in 2011 for disposal in a 705 hectares eleven islands as Rabida (499 hectares) and Bartholomew (124), and between November and December 2012 in Finch (1,812) and South Plaza (9.6).

Besides turtle nests that give their name to the island region, rodents attack from other groups such as iguanas and lizards in their diet include Galapagos, which has at least 1,500 species of flora and 500 fauna. "There are countless species that have not yet discovered," said Naula, who noted that 60% of book genres are also endemic Darwin's finches, who came from other places to "evolve and become new species "birds. In striving Galapagos conservation (with 13 major islands, 57 minors and 123 rocks and boulders) and with the help of organizations such as the U.S. Island Conservation, the PNG drives with pellets of poison rat anticoagulant and food, which are dispersed from a helicopter.

To Pinzon and Plaza Sur were used 22 tonnes of bait and experts estimated that in those areas had between eight and twelve rats per hectare. "One of the actions is to prevent the bait affect other native or endemic species," he said while watching Sevilla 60 hawks that since last November remain in captivity in cages installed on a slope of Pinzon. There are the remains of two rodents, but also of an owl that died by eating a poisoned mouse. "That's the cost, but allow the natural restoration plan," said the director of Ecosystems, Danny Rueda. The guards also guard boxes with lava lizards, while 40 South Square iguanas are protected in Santa Cruz. "It is to ensure the conservation of species," said Naula.

Birds and animals will be released after the rat-a degradable product in five days and is not soluble in water to avoid contamination. The scheme will be extended to other islands even inhabited. "Galapagos Evolution has not stopped, with the passage of time new species are obtained. The geological formation of the archipelago (of volcanic origin) has not been arrested," said Naula. added that "we try to restore the Galapagos ecosystems that have long received a strong enough product alteration whalers and buccaneers "who came for shelter and stock up on turtles, which served as" fresh meat "in hiking. Within this framework have also been eradicated goats and pigeons of several islands, but still there are other animals that are foes like cats and dogs. Ecuadorian islands, that between 2007 and 2010 were in the list of endangered heritage sites were natural laboratory of Charles Darwin, author of the theory on the evolution of species.

Thanks to elcomercio.com for this article.