invasive exotics

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

Green iguanas are invasive exotics and in South Florida, their numbers have exploded. They eat vegetation and sometimes bird eggs. And they dig into the ground, destabilizing canal banks, bridge pilings — and at the Key West cemetery, grave sites.

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

Key West is taking on the island's abundant wild iguana population. They're everywhere, including city-owned property, from the old landfill known as Mount Trashmore to the historic cemetery in the center of the island. 

FLORIDA FISH AND WILDLIFE CONSERVATION COMMISSION

The U.S. Geological Survey, USGS, is collecting DNA to track a new snake hybrid in the Everglades.

Zack Ransom / Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science

Divers from a Key Largo environmental group and a Miami science museum removed an orangespine unicornfish from a reef off the Upper Keys this week.

The underwater rapid response team was put together to prevent another exotic species like lionfish from getting a finhold in South Florida waters. Unicornfish are popular in the saltwater aquarium trade, and are native to the tropical Pacific.

Mark Hedden / markhedden.com

In South Florida, iguanas are everywhere. So now the state agency responsible for protecting wildlife — and dealing with exotic species — is holding workshops to help the public cope with the prolific reptiles.

Jeremy Dixon / U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

 Burmese pythons have established themselves in the Everglades — and now they appear to be breeding in the Florida Keys, according to state and federal wildlife agencies.

NOAA's National Ocean Service/Flickr

  For more than a decade, lionfish have been a problem in Atlantic waters — especially South Florida, where the invasive exotics eat native fish, including herbivores that help keep algae off the reefs.