Despite a seasonal slowdown, the green iguana cull total crept beyond the 300,000 mark over the Christmas and New Year holiday period.
The Department of Environment now estimates that cullers may have eradicated up to a quarter of the total population of the invasive species within the first two months of the cull.
The number of iguanas killed was logged at 298,132 as of Dec. 31. A total of 4,194 iguanas were dropped off at the landfill on Jan. 2, taking the total beyond 300,000.
Weekly cull totals dipped drastically over the holiday season, dropping from around 30,000 per week to just under 14,000 during Christmas week. The landfill collection site was closed on public holidays, contributing to the lower-than-usual intake. The numbers were always expected to dip as the cull progressed, with prey becoming more difficult to find.
According to the DoE, cullers turned in an average of 5,733 green iguanas per day in the first 52 days of the cull.
“Per week totals for the first nine weeks of the project averaged 32,680, including an initial first-week rush and a drop in deliveries to the landfill during the holiday period,” the department noted in an online statement on the project so far.