A geographic profiling tool used to catch serial criminals could help reduce the casualties of human-tiger conflict, according to University scientists who collaborated on an innovative conservation research study.
The results of their research, published in Nature Communications, help explain how villagers in Sumatra coexist with tigers. If used pre-emptively it could have helped cut attacks by half, saving tigers from poaching and retaliation killings.
Dr Matthew Struebig at the University of Kent’s Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology, in its School of Anthropology and Conservation and Dr Freya St. John at Bangor University, led a collaboration between spatial ecologists and social scientists to help predict where human-tiger conflict interventions could be most effective.
Tigers are on the brink of extinction due to deforestation and persecution. They are highly threatened and pose a public threat, but in Sumatra tigers continue to coexist with people, offering insights for managing dangerous wildlife elsewhere. Millions of conservation funds are spent each year trying to reduce people’s risk of encountering harmful animals, and mitigating livestock losses of local farmers.
To reveal the drivers of human-tiger conflict the team coupled spatial analyses of tiger encounter risk with information from 2,386 Sumatrans who were asked about their tolerance of wildlife. To map risk, the study used 13 years of human-tiger encounter records to generate a geographic profile – a sophisticated statistical technique previously used throughout the world to predict the whereabouts of serial criminalsbased on where their crimes have been committed.
Although the risk of encountering a tiger was generally greater around populated villages near forest or rivers, the geographic profile revealed three places where risk was particularly high. At the same time questionnaires revealed that people’s tolerance for tigers was related to their underlying attitudes, emotions, norms and spiritual beliefs.
By combining this information, the team was able to highlight villages where risk was adversely high, and tolerance was unusually low – valuable guidance for organisations such as Fauna & Flora International, an international conservation charity that supports the Indonesian authorities and other in-country partners in Sumatra, helping them to prioritise conflict interventions.
The techniques used in this study are highly significant and open up new possibilities for more targeted actions that will not only boost efficiency, but – more importantly – ensure that fewer people and tigers come to harm as a result of their interactions. This research has shown for example that, had this information been available at the time, pre-emptive interventions using these predictions could have averted up to 51% of attacks on livestock and people, potentially saving 15 tigers.
Dr Struebig said: ‘Understanding people’s tolerance is key to managing dangerous species and is particularly urgent for tigers. When combined with our maps of encounter risk, information on people’s tolerance to wildlife helps us direct conservation resources to where they are needed most. This could amount to significant cost savings in terms of animals lost or funding spent, so could be very useful in conservation.’
The Latest on: Human-tiger conflict interventions
via Google News
The Latest on: Human-tiger conflict interventions
- Research methods that find serial criminals could help save tigers on August 27, 2018 at 9:04 am
led a collaboration between spatial ecologists and social scientists to help predict where human-tiger conflict interventions could be most effective. Tigers are on the brink of extinction due to defo... […]
- Rs 14 crore project to bring people closer to forests on June 4, 2017 at 3:15 pm
The Rs14 crore project, of which Rs3 crore has already been released, will connect people through direct community based interventions by fostering ... with villagers as members to address human-tiger ... […]
- Poachers Are Killing Tigers to Sell Them for Their Bones. How We’re Working to Stop This on September 22, 2016 at 7:39 am
The project tackles wildlife and other forest crimes, mitigates human-tiger conflict, trains rangers and police to ... the habitat and prey they need, and what interventions protect them best. Due to ... […]
- As forests disappear, Indonesia must monitor big cats to reduce human wildlife conflict, says scientist on May 22, 2013 at 3:27 am
This could include redrawing national park zones and boundaries to ensure that communities do not collect forest resources in areas where big cats are known to breed; carrying out interventions ... mo... […]
- Claim of human and tiger ‘coexistence’ lacks perspective on January 28, 2013 at 4:00 pm
A crucial obstacle to the consideration of coexistence as a conservation strategy in the Chitwan landscape is the high incidence of human-tiger ... intervention by park authorities in the same period. ... […]
- No success for REDD+ without understanding possible impacts on forest biodiversity and people on November 16, 2012 at 12:09 am
While REDD+ actions can provide clear benefits, it is not always easy to predict or measure all impacts of such interventions on carbon and ... this forested buffer zone was an increase is human–tiger ... […]
- No tourism in core area, NTCA to SC on November 3, 2011 at 12:40 pm
The respondent further stated that the amendment has strengthened the hands of chief wildlife wardens to achieve mainstream tiger conservation in other production landscapes for avoiding human-tiger c... […]
- Indian Wild Tiger Population Increases on March 29, 2011 at 5:00 am
“The results indicate the need to intensify field-based management and intervention to go beyond the present ... On top of all of that, the survey also highlighted an increase in human-tiger conflict ... […]
- Nepal translocates first wild tiger on January 21, 2011 at 4:00 pm
“The Babai valley was an ideal location for the translocation because of its vast size and available prey species, improved anti-poaching efforts, lower human-tiger conflict and good ... improve conse... […]
- Tiger team marks 20 years of conflict resolution on December 23, 2010 at 4:00 pm
It was set up by the government in 1999 to help resolve "human- tiger conflict". Amur tigers live in the mosaic ... as a really important component of that - 20 years ago, the main intervention was a ... […]
via Bing News