Islanders once tried to introduce the Galapagos marine iguanas to Bermuda. *Creative Commons photo by Charlesjsharp
Islanders once tried to introduce the Galapagos marine iguanas to Bermuda. *Creative Commons photo by Charlesjsharp

The brown anole lizard is not the first foreign invader to sneak into Bermuda under the radar.

Several species have been accidentally introduced into the island’s environment over the years.

Some of these stowaways have upset the delicate balance of Bermuda’s fauna and flora.

While other creatures have been brought in deliberately to tackle pests or simply to satisfy man’s whim.

Some of these importations have proved to be disastrous such as pigeons, which compete with longtails for nesting sights and kiskadees, which prey on the Bermuda skink.

Conservationists fight an ongoing battle to maintain the equilibrium of Bermuda’s unique ecology.

And today they urged islanders to help them guard the island’s points of entry and report any sightings of unusual creatures to Conservation Services immediately.

Wildlife ecologist Mark Outerbridge said: “We rely on people working at the docks and the airport, where these animals usually arrive, to keep unwanted guests out of our eco-system.

“A good example of what you should do is highlighted by the story of Stumpette, the green iguana at the zoo.

“She was found at the Hamilton Docks in February 2000.

“It’s believed she was a stowaway on a cargo ship.

“When they found her they brought her straight to BAMZ and we have been able to look after and use her as an educational tool for more than 10 years.

“This shows how the public can help us do our job and look after Bermuda’s native and endemic species at the same time.”

Earlier this summer a snake was found on Tucker’s Point Golf Course.

The Southern Black Racer is believed to have arrived on the island in a visitor’s golf bag.

The animal was euthanized because it posed a potentially devastating threat to Bermuda’s ecology.

In 2005, geckos were accidentally introduced into Bermuda.

It is believed they arrived in an airplane shipment and then escaped into the environment.

They have since multiplied and become established across the island. While a 1965 paper written by conservationist David Wingate revealed that islanders once tried to introduce Galapagos marine iguanas onto the island in the 1930s  — but without success.