Solomon Islands

Strangers in Paradise takes us on a discovery journey to identify and learn about various species living on the islands of Hawaii, Solomon Islands, Rarotonga, New Zealand, and Easter Island. In contrast, we also take a look at the impact of human development on such species. The introduction of rats and new predators had devastating effects on these, which prompted research into control measures to address this problem.

The biodiversity within the Solomon Island's geographical and political boundary are continuously under pressure from habitat destruction, overexploitation, waste, invasive species and climate change. Capacity constraints emanating from the absence of biodiversity values, institutional constraints, inadequate finance and the lack of scientific information are consequently undermining effort to lessen these pressures on biodiversity.

During the 1970's village people in the Temotu province of the Solomon Islands complained to Provincial and Central Government authorities about rat damage to garden and plantation crops and household commodities.

This national ocean policy aims to protect and increase the value of resources of ocean and also the inherent value of the marine ecosystems and species upon which that wealth relies on.

The Pacific islands of Oceania cover almost 15% of the world’s surface and are characterised by a high degree of ecosystem and species diversity. The region is characterised by thousands of isolated small coral atolls and higher volcanic islands, which has led to the high diversity of species found today. In fact, the number of plants and animals found nowhere else on earth (endemic species) is extremely high - often up to 90% for particular groups. Often, these rare and endemic species are adapted to specialised habitats and limited to small areas of a few islands.

Introduced most probably intentionally, as a biological control against nut fall bugs (Amblypelta sp) in coconut and cocoa, the Little Fire Ant (Wasmannia auropunctata) has for more than 30 years continued to spread and colonies a number of different environments in the Solomon Islands. To date, no studies have investigated the ecological impact of these ants. The impact of Little Fire Ants was measured on (1) the overall ant fauna within subsistence gardens, (2) the prevalence of additional insect pests in subsistence gardens, and (3) the significant pest Tarophagus sp.