Successful Conservation Intervention in the Chagos Archipelago

British Indian Ocean Territory, 10 April 2017: Conservationists from the Chagos Conservation Trust announce the first successful removal of invasive black rats in the Chagos Archipelago.

Success! Conservationists with the Chagos Conservation Trust (CCT) are celebrating the news of a successful restoration mission to remove invasive rats from Ile Vache Marine. The Chagos Archipelago region rests just south of the Maldives within the British Indian Ocean Territory. Ile Vache Marine lies within a designated Strict Nature Reserve.

Invasive Black Rats likely arrived on the island by boat. Rats may have scurried ashore during the first attempts of permanent settlement by the French and British in the late 1700’s and possibly earlier during Portuguese exploration. The island is home to the Critically Endangered Hawksbill Turtle and the Endangered Green Sea Turtle (Endangered). Internationally protected native seabirds also inhabit the island. Rats eat the eggs, hatchlings, and nestlings of the turtles and birds. They are also known to eat adults. For centuries, the rats on Ile Vache Marine aggressively suppressed native animal population levels. In recent years, only small numbers of important seabird species were known to breed on the island.


Critically Endangered Hawksbill Turtle. Photo Credit: Kevin Bryant

In 2014, an invasive rat removal operation was implemented. The goal of the CCT project was to restore biodiversity and the island’s native ecosystem. In order to declare an island “rat free,” a minimum period of two years of monitoring must take place. After completion of the project, Pete Carr, a CCT trustee and terrestrial biodiversity specialist, and the restoration team waited before returning for assessment. Carr claims:

We know that globally invasive black rats have had a devastating impact on oceanic island ecosystems by suppressing populations of native animals and preventing regeneration of native plants.

island-conservation-Pete-Carr-surveying-Ile-Vache-Marine April 2017 9c) CCT

Pete Carr surveying on Ile Vache Marine. Photo Credit: CCT

In April of 2017, Pete Carr along with Dr. Grant Harper, a biodiversity restoration specialist, received support from the British Indian Ocean Territory Administration to carry out a return-expedition to the island. The goal: To examine their prior work in hopes of finding flourishing native restoration and to finally declare Ile Vache Marine free of rats.

The project was a success–no evidence of rats! Observations include an increased number of invertebrates, seabirds breeding, and native seed germination. The announcement of this successful project signals the beginning of the healing process of this small island–a regional example for larger neighboring islands. Perhaps a Hawksbill Turtle can return to Ile Vache Marine after long ocean travel to build a beach nest, now safe from invasive predators.


Native Sooty Terns soaring above Ile Vache Marine. Photo Credit: CCT

Source: Chagos Conservation Trust

Featured photo: Ile Vache Marine. Credit: Jon Slayer

About John Brodie

John has recently received scholarship to enroll with Prescott College to study Marine Conservation via the Kino Bay Center in the Gulf of California. A storytelling career started while living in Sweden, searching for surf in the Baltic Sea. His writing and photography have since evolved into contributions in support of sustainable material efforts within the surf industry, publishing work with Patagonia and developing content for many-alike. New to Island Conservation, John is thrilled to join the communications team and to share the stories about saving island species from extinction. When not writing, you can find John and his dog surfing and camping along the West Coast.

View All Posts

Follow Island Conservation on Social Media

[ism-social-followers list='fb,tw,li,youtube,instagram' template='ism_template_sf_1' list_align='horizontal' display_counts='false' display_full_name='true' box_align='center' ]

[ism-social-followers list='fb,tw,li,youtube,instagram' template='ism_template_sf_1' list_align='horizontal' display_counts='false' display_full_name='true' box_align='center' ]

Midway Atoll conservation




%d bloggers like this:
Send this to a friend

cbd fda approved best cbd sleep aid cbd oil benefits anxiety natural grow rx cbd oil reviews cbd oil ibd how much cbd oil average use per month cbd liquid gold 18k strength cbd causes anxiety spa treatment melbourne cbd de quervains tenosynovitis cbd oil truorganics cbd cbd one mct tincture pharmacokinetics of cbd boneyard cbd when does cbd oil expire cbd lotion for nerve pain 7 cbd oil zilis cbd motivation 1 to 1 thc cbd oil cbd makes me hungry cbd oil carrollton tx cbd oil carmel indiana wisconsin cbd oil laws cannabis oil for sale amazon cbd oil for kids with bad behavior bursitis and cbd oil best cbd oil tincture pain cbd oil blogs

gnc dick pills diamond trader penis enlargement celexa male enhancement noxitril male enhancement pills red rhino male enhancement pill penis enlargement software instarect male enhancement 3 bullet sex pills fx3000 male enhancement pills sex while taking birth control pills pge1 penis enlargement nostrenga male enhancement pills garlic pills and erectile dysfunction reddit the blue pill cvs dhea supplement indian herbal male enhancement how to use extenze pill g4910 pill extenze square pills medicine comparisons extenze shot with soft gel pill review webmd best sex stimulant pills alternative medicine names premature ejaculation pills review one more night sex pill male enhancement pill restless leg pink diamond shaped pill sex stamina pills online

1000 calories diet weight loss mila kunis weight loss black swan diet dr now weight loss diet combined diet and metformin weight loss which is the shark tank keto diet pills hydroxycut pills to lose weight diet that helps lose weight fast ketogenic diet weight loss menu weight loss diet for pcos patients which diet plan is best for weight loss in 60s diet fast fasting loss weight weight loss pills nz prescription what are thermo generic weight loss pills good weight loss pills for get pregnant keto advanced weight loss 80 mg pills slimquick pure weight loss pills cholesterol pills cause weight loss most successful diet plans for weight loss lovidia weight loss pills grape diet weight loss can dr prescribe weight loss pills will chinese gfood affect weight loss diet weight loss pills actors use diets to lose weight fast in a month best weight loss pills according to doctors high strength weight loss pills apple cider diet weight loss coffee pills for weight loss