>> Tuesday, November 4, 2008
There are some furry little rodents that live in St. Thomas, and no, I don't mean the rats. And they aren't really rodents at all. We have mongooses here. Yes yes, like Rikki Tikki Tavi. They were imported to the West Indies to aid with rat and snake control. This had HORRIBLE consequences (NOTE TO ALL: don't import animals, EVER!). Now we hardly have any snakes, the few we DO have are now endangered, and the small fauna population in general has suffered (except for iguanas, they hide in trees). Since they no longer have much prey, they are now in decline as well. Funny how that happens! I wish I could show you a picture I took, but they are fast buggers and I have a lot of butt shots. Also, they are predominantly diurnal (day hunters as opposed to nocturnal) and I only have time as the sun is going down to stalk them. They recede very quickly as it darkens.
The image to the right is Herpestes ichneumon. This is the same genus as the species we have here, but not the same species. We have Herpestes auropunctatus. The picture here is from Wikimedia Commons and is in the public domain. Little by little, I think you all may become Virgin Islands wild life experts. Hehe.