Florida Agency Holding First Workshop on Nonnative Iguanas Dec. 13

This will be the agency's first of several iguana technical assistance workshops in the Florida Keys.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) will host several public technical assistance workshops regarding iguanas in the Florida Keys, starting with a Dec. 13 public workshop in Marathon, Fla., from 5 to 8 p.m. local time. Green iguanas and black spiny-tailed iguanas are large, nonnative lizards that have reproducing populations in the Florida Keys; they can be a nuisance to homeowners by damaging landscape plants and gardens, leaving droppings in yards and pools, and causing property damage by digging burrows, according to the agency.

"Iguanas may impact sensitive natural resources in the Keys, but we do not know the extent of the threat," said Sarah Funck, who leads FWC's Nonnative Fish and Wildlife Program. "These workshops will help empower homeowners to manage this nonnative species on their own property."

The Dec. 13 workshop will be held at the Hyatt Place, 1996 Overseas Highway. Workshops are also being planned for Key Largo and Key West. Participants will learn how to discourage iguanas from their property and about legal removal options and regulations pertaining to the species. FWC biologists will also provide hands-on instruction with live traps.

To learn more about upcoming nonnative species workshops, visit MyFWC.com/Nonnatives and click on Public Workshops.

Elsewhere, Gov. Rick Scott announced the appointment of Sonya Rood and Gary Nicklaus to the commission. "I'd like to thank Liesa Priddy for nearly six years of service and Ron Bergeron for ten years of service to the state and their dedication to the conservation of Florida's natural resources," the governor said. "It is because of the hard work of Floridians like Liesa and Ron that residents and visitors can safely enjoy our natural resources now and for generations to come. I am confident that Gary Nicklaus and Sonya Rood will continue their great work and proudly serve Florida families."

Rood, 53, of St. Augustine, succeeds Priddy and is appointed for a term beginning Dec. 1, 2017, and ending Jan. 2, 2022. Nicklaus, 48, of Jupiter, succeeds Bergeron and is appointed for a term beginning Dec. 1, 2017, and ending Aug.1, 2022. Both appointments are subject to Florida Senate confirmation.

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