Mongoose eradication project completed around Cape Hedo
Okinawa Prefecture and the Ministry of Environment have announced that mongoose eradication has been completed in the area from Benoki to Sosu in Kunigami Village and north. The area is about 53.1 square kilometers around Cape Hedo.
The eradication effort started in 2000, and this is the 2nd ward to be recognized as completing the task. Last year, 92 mongooses were captured in traps, marking the first time that less than 100 were caught. According to the Ministry of Environment, Okinawa rails, Yambaru Kuina, designated as a natural national treasure, are increasing because of the eradication or mongoose.
The ministry recognizes that the number of mongoose and their habitat area are decreasing.
Okinawa Prefecture and Ministry of Environment have set traps in the area from Shioya to Fukuchi Dam in Ogimi Village along so called SF-line and northward for the purpose of complete elimination. The traps snared 92 mongooses in fiscal 2015, which was 27.6% less than the previous year. A total of 125 mongooses, including those caught by search dogs, was 19.4% less than a year before. The number of mongooses captured each year has decreased to one fifth of 2007 when 619 of them was captured, the most ever.
None of them have been seen in Benoki and Sosu areas in four consecutive years, including with sensor cameras. So, it’s recognized that the mongoose in the area are completely eliminated.
The elimination started from north where there were fewer mongooses. The area will gradually be expanded towards south until all mongooses are eradicted from the island.