Influence of social status and industrial development on poaching acceptability
Mudumba T., Moll RJ., Jingo S., Riley S., Macdonald DW., Astaras C., Montgomery RA.
Subsistence poaching threatens the persistence of wildlife populations worldwide and the well-being of people who participate in poaching. We conducted interviews around Murchison Falls National Park, Uganda to assess the acceptability of poaching. Conflict with wildlife was the most important factor determining attitudes towards poaching and the tools of the trade. More than 80 % of the respondents living within 5 km of the park boundary had never been inside the park. Additionally, the provision of goats as incentives to people did not influence attitudes but increased human-wildlife conflict. This implies that acceptability of poaching among people living in close proximity to wildlife is influenced by the nature of the interaction between people and protected areas, but more importantly, limiting positive interaction can create negative consequences. Our results emphasize the importance of providing remedies compatible with local livelihoods and conditions and show that negative experience with wildlife builds intolerance.