Posted by : sanne

In each ESF-newsletter we will interview either a passionate individual or an employee of an organisation that is connected to ESF. In this newsletter we would like to introduce Evert Henningheim.

Evert has a green iguana ( Iguana iguana ) placed in 2002 at his home . This was a shelter animal of 2.5 years . Not much later, he found a female. Despite his preference for Cyclura and Ctenosaura never other animals have been added to the iguana couple. This is because he is often away from home for his conservation work and his fieldwork . If the Iguanas would die there probably will not be any reptiles in the house.

In the past Evert bred the Jamaican Iguana ( Cyclura collei ) and other Cyclura species. With this species he has also worked hard in recent years in conservation terms .

For some time now Evert committed to Spinytail Iguanas ( Ctenosauras ). The mainland and island populations of Ctenosaura melanosterna is under such pressure that a hurricane could wipe out the entire population in the wild says Evert . This is not unrealistic since both populations are in a hurricane area. Besides hurricanes there are several other threads like habitat destruction, invasive animal species and human consumption. A plan for the establishment of an assurance colony Ctenosaura melanosterna made ​​IUCN ISG came into view or better said the ESF and SDGL. After an ISG meeting in 2008 in Honduras he was asked to join the IUCN as ISG member. Since that time he has been involved in research regarding Ctenosaura bakeri, C. melanosterna, C. oedirhina, C. Palearis, C. pectinata, Cyclura collei, C. nubila and C. cornuta. In addition a few more conservation related trips for Heloderma horridum charlesbogerti and Crocodylus acutus.

Various agencies support Evert in situ work . He encounters many organizations in which everyone plays a major or minor role . In a project are often many stakeholders . It is beautiful to experience that the professional conservation world knows names such as the ESF, SDGL , better known as Dutch Iguana Foundation and Herpetofauna as financially supporting organizations . All for leisure but operating at the professional level . Evert is a strong supporter of organizations where the leisure industry and professional conservation organizations work together hand in hand.

When asked what he would do if Evert was made possible to spend € 100.000, - to research his answer is: " There are so many studies / projects where money is needed. I am not able to make a choice that quickly. My criteria for money supplies are based on the fact whether it governs effect. No lengthy project descriptions with large sums, but short term plans of up to 2 years. This type of projects should be specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, time bound and solution."

Within ESF we know Evert of course as studbook keeper for Ctenosaura melanosterna. This takes time, but in recent years Rene Gaal pulls the car alone . Through this Evert has more time for his other work for Spinytail Iguanas.

Why Evert spends so much time on the projects he has a remarkable motivation: " Call it selfishness, it makes you feel well, it's fun and educational. In addition, you come at many places in the world where others do not come that quickly or never will or may come at all. "

We also asked Evert what he would do if he were president of ESF? What is the first thing to address? His answer is clear cut; according to him there is no one better suited for that position than Henk Zwartepoorte. Evert knows better than anyone how people in the conservation world speak about Henk and ESF!

Interview by Frank Verschoor