Thursday, July 26, 2012

La Grange Father and Son Tag Team Iguanas in The Bahamas


LA GRANGE — Ten minutes was a long time to wait for a determined iguana to unclench its jaws locked on the thumb of a La Grange man volunteering in the Bahamas.

“He just had my glove,” said Michael Delfini, an executive with the Shedd Aquarium, who tagged iguanas for a research project in April aside from his normal duties in Chicago.

“When he turned his neck around and grabbed my thumb, I could see he wasn’t going to let go,” said Delfini, who had been holding the animal so a researcher could conduct tests.

Delfini and his 16-year-old son, Paolo, were among the hearty crew who waded out to work on the remote Exuma Islands of the Bahamas during the day and returned to sleep aboard a research vessel, the Coral Reef II. The 10-day research expedition was sponsored by the Shedd in cooperation with the Bahamas National Trust, which manages the country’s national parks.

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