The authorities had to set up traps to try to fight this invasion.
Imagine swimming on a dream beach this fall, lounging in turquoise water and discovering a snake splashing about. proximity… This image has become in a few months the nightmare of the authorities and tourism professionals of a destination very popular with Europeans every year! However, it is not an exotic destination or a leisure spot. the other side of the world, but a sure value of tourism in Europe which faces this unexpected and spectacular invasion.
To protect native species, authorities must now closely monitor the islets where they are found. These snakes have taken up residence. Since their arrival, these snakes have proliferated rapidly, threatening the local ecosystem. The authorities, worried about the lack of natural predators, launched an attack. an intensive capture operation. In 2023, more than 3,000 snakes have been killed. captured thanks to with the help of volunteers using traps scattered in many areas.
Initially discovered at Ibiza in 2016, these snakes indeed proved to be much more mobile than expected, even swimming in the open sea and quickly gained popularity. the neighboring islands of the Balearic archipelago, such as Formentera and Majorca. The problem is not limited to the most common snake, the horseshoe snake: other species, such as rat snakes and grass snakes, have been added to the problem. ; the equation. These reptiles were spotted not only on land, near beaches, in urban areas but also in the open sea, threatening marine fauna.
The COFIB (Consorci de Recuperació de Fauna de les Illes Balears, the center for wildlife protection in the Balearic Islands) explained: Spanish media Ultima Hora reported that although these snakes are not directly dangerous to humans, they pose a serious threat to local species, including lizards and coastal birds. The iron snake snake Horses, rat snakes and garter snakes are now considered invasive species on all the islands, including all islands. with the exception of Menorca, where their presence dates back to centuries.
The fight against these invaders is complicated by their unpredictable behavior and the absence of natural predators, unlike in other countries. mainland Spain where the presence of wild boars, foxes or badgers makes it possible to further regulate these invasive species.