A tour of the Blue Iguana Conservation’s captive breeding facility offers an up-close-and-personal view of the Blue Iguana (Cyclura lewisi), Grand Cayman’s largest native land animal. The tour introduces guests to some of the programme’s star breeders and shares the fascinating tale of how the programme began in 1990, with only 30 dedicated Blue Iguanas, under the direction of conservationist Fred Burton. Today, the breeding facility is home to approximately 100 Blue Iguanas of varying ages, many over five-feet long and in excess of 25 pounds.
The Blue Iguana once numbered in the tens of thousands but over decades the population was decimated by development, wild animals, vehicular traffic and human population. By 2001, fewer than 30 individuals were estimated to remain in the wild and the species was listed as critically endangered by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
Formerly known as the Blue Iguana Recovery Programme, the initial goal of the programme was to restore a wild population of 1,000 Blue Iguanas in order to encourage a viable population in the long-term. Due to the efforts of the programme, the Blue Iguanas were downgraded from the IUCN’s “red list” to endangered in 2012.
By 2018, we released our 1,000th Blue Iguana, celebrating an important milestone for the programme.
Skilled Level: Beginner
Intensity Level: Relaxed Quiet
Family Friendly: Yes