Cool Runnings Catamarans – Jamaican Mongoose

Cool Runnings Catamaran Cruises now wants to explain something about the Mongoose. As you know the Mongoose is not a natural resident of Jamaica. It was imported to take care of the large grey rat that lived and still lives in the cane fields. Well, it did not stop there and found its way to eating all the snakes, other prettier frogs, lizards, ground nesting birds and a few chickens.mongoose

The Mongoose comes from a family called the Herpestidae in the suborder Feliformia where you will also find cats and hyenas. Herpestes javanicus, was the animal that was imported from India in 1872.

Image from Wiki Media

Anyway, Cool Runnings Catamaran Cruises can tell you that the Mongoose can now be found from the cane fields to the coast to the top of the mountains. It has become a dreadful pest as it breeds prolifically and there are no natural enemies. It will also eat fruit of any kind preferring, like some us the sweet banana, and it can dig up a yam with its slender paws in moments.

We know that in some parts of the world the Mongoose is a house pet, especially where there are dangerous snakes around. So it acts kind of like a guard Mongoose, protecting the family.

We are fortunate in Jamaica that we have no poisonous snakes, so now folks are wondering what can be done about the mongoose. They have been wondering for a couple of hundred years now.

We at Cool Runnings Catamaran Cruises don’t have much to do with mongoose, so we can say it looks like a pretty cute creature, long and low and slim and furry. A lot like an American gray squirrel.

A note to the nervous visitor, you will not find a mongoose skipping across your hotel lawn any time soon. They are nervous little creatures and you might see one scuttle across a country road in the dark of night.

More cheerfully, there are some good old Jamaican toons about Mongoose, like Slide Mongoose, here sung by Ernie Smith on YouTube And here is one that mixes Run, or Slide Mongoose up with another old favorite – Linstead Market sung by Lord Flea and the Jamaican Calypsonians.

Our information was gleaned from the Jamaica Observer May 2009 and an article in the 1898 Popular Science Monthly, Volume 54, and of course our good friend Wikipedia. See you on a Sunset Cruise.