DOAG combats invasive species but needs community’s help

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Guam – Brown tree snake and hunter education program coordinator Jane Dia says they are offering hunter safety classes in order to encourage hunters to catch feral swine and deer as both are actually invasive species that damage native plants and local crops. DOAG also runs the Kontra I Kulepbla (Fight the Snake) program. Controlling the brown tree snake allows for the re-introduction of native birds into the wild. “We’re offering a brown tree snake control workshop this month,” said Dia adding, “At the Yigo mayor’s office and we show people what they need to do when they encounter snakes but we also tell them about all our control programs with all these different agencies.” Dia says this hunter education workshop is at the Yigo mayor’s office on February 28th from 6-7 p.m. In addition to this DOAG will be hosting a free film premiere of a documentary on hunting titled,”An Acquired Taste”, on February 24th from 6-8 p.m. at the Guam Museum.

DOAG biosecurity division agriculturalist Glenn Dulla says that their division is focused on controlling the movement of invasive species both into and out of Guam. Dulla says Guam is seeing an increase to the number of invasive species coming to the island. The more people and cargo that come into Guam, the more the chances of invasive species coming into the island increases. Although they can’t catch a hundred percent of the invasive species that come into Guam they can control the numbers through prevention, but they need the public’s help. “We have a saying that invasive species is everyone’s responsibility. It’s not only biosecurity’s it’s not only USDA it’s not only GovGuam it’s private companies and the community in general. Because as singular entities on our own we can only do a small part. Really, it’s a huge collaborative effort for any of us to do anything successful in controlling invasive species,” said Dulla. February 26th to March 2nd is national invasive species awareness week.