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Sunday, April 20, 2014

Garapan resident claims prize for finding BTS detector dog

A brown tree snake detector dog that’s been missing since Dec. 11, 2013, was returned to the Division of Fish and Wildlife BTS program yesterday by a Garapan resident.

Vicenta S. Lacanlale said she found the 12-year-old Jack Russell terrier on Dec. 15, roaming close to her apartment at the back of the Horiguchi Building in Garapan.

“She just came to my house and she was very friendly,” said Lacanlale.

She said it took her five days to call DFW after reading the missing flyer for “Maddy” on Dec. 20. The return of the dog, which has been with the BTS Program since 2002, was only done yesterday because of the holidays.

For her troubles, Lacanlale was awarded a $100 finder’s fee that was sponsored by radio KKMP. The 48-year-old said she will use the money to buy groceries.

BTS Program K-9 supervisor Marja K. Onni thanked the Good Samaritan for bringing “Maddy” back home.

Onni said it’s a mystery how “Maddy” was able to walk from the BTS Program’s K-9 kennel in Lower Base to Lacanlale’s Canton Apartment in Garapan. “Tell me about it. How could this little bitty one [managed to go so far]?” she said.

Onni also took the opportunity to thank KKMP owners Gary Sword and Rosemond Santos for putting up a reward for the safe return of “Maddy.”

She said “Maddy” is one of three Jack Russell terriers that the BTS Program has. Two are on Saipan and one is on Tinian. They also have other breeds of dogs in the program.

Onni said that “Maddy” and other BTS detector K-9 help inspect airplanes and sea vessels coming from Guam to make sure they are free of brown tree snakes, which since their introduction to the U.S. territory during World War II has totally wiped out the local bird population on the island.

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