Several non-native toads captured – a threat to the ecosystem

Several non-native toads captured - a threat to the ecosystem

A cane toad found and captured in Minatogawa, Urasoe City. (Provided by the Ministry of the Environment Naha Nature Conservation Office).


October 24, 2011 Ryukyu Shimpo

Cane toads, which are designated as an invasive alien species due to their harmful effect on the ecosystem, have been identified and captured on a regular basis in Urasoe City. According to the Ministry of the Environment Naha Nature Conservation Office, 550 of these toads have been trapped in U.S. Marine Corps Camp Kinser, and 50 in Minatogawa within Urasoe City itself. The U.S. Marine Corps Okinawa has worked on pest control and the city has urged its citizen to cooperate in the process of finding and catching these toads by distributing leaflets. Cane toads measure about 8 to 20 centimeters in length, and are a variety of large toad originating in Central and South America. The intrusion route to the main island of Okinawa remains unknown, but cane toads have already colonized North and South Daito Islands and Ishigaki Island. The breeding season next spring brings with it the threat of an explosion in the population of these animals. If you manage to capture one, put it in a plastic bag to stop it escaping and contact the Ministry of the Environment Naha Nature Conservation Office (098-858-5824) or the Environmental Conservation Section of Urasoe City (098-876-1234 ext. 3216).

(English Translation by T&CT, Shinako Oyakawa and Mark Ealey)

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