The Honolulu Star Advertiser (and the Island Conservation blog) recently published an article entitled “Coqui frog on Garden Isle is captured and eliminated,” referring to a coquí found on the island of Kauai. I understand the terrible effects of invasive species but, as a Puerto Rican, my heart still jumps at the thought of our highly symbolic coquí, which is becoming more and more endangered on our island, being “captured and eliminated” (don’t roll your eyes, Lisa!) Perhaps someone will find a way to bring them back to their home island. . .
The island of Kauai dodged a small, croaking bullet last month. An invasive Coqui Frog managed to stow away on a car brought over from the Big Island. The State Department of Agriculture and the Kauai Invasive Species Committee removed the Coqui Frog from the area after locals reported hearing the loud chirping.
Invasive Coqui Frogs dominate the Big Island of Hawaii. These frogs are only the size of a quarter, but their impact should not be underestimated. In fifteen years the Big Island population of Coqui Frogs has grown into the tens of thousands. This is especially concerning since almost 90% of adult frogs don’t live longer than one year. The invasive population of Coqui frogs isn’t an issue of space, but rather a matter of sound. The Coqui Frogs produce an inescapable “wall of sound” as they chirp through the night. [. . .]
In Puerto Rico where the Coqui Frog is native, locals enjoy the frogs’ chirping–but the case couldn’t be more different in Hawaii. The chirping persists from dusk to dawn, and has become especially annoying for Hawaii natives who were accustomed to the quiet nights before the introduction of the invasive species.
Communications director of the Big Island Invasive Species Committee Franny Brewer has noted that in addition to their increasing numbers, the Coqui Frogs have almost tripled in size from their original infestation 15 years ago. [. . .]
See more on the coquí here: http://www.biologicaldiversity.org/news/press_releases/2012/coqui-llanero-10-03-2012.html