Large mammal use of protected and community-managed lands in a biodiversity hotspot

Velho, N., Srinivasan, U., Singh, P., and Laurance, W.F. (2016) Large mammal use of protected and community-managed lands in a biodiversity hotspot. Animal Conservation, 19 (2). pp. 199-208.

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In large parts of the biodiversity-rich tropics, various forest governance regimes often coexist, ranging from governmental administration to highly decentralized community management. Two common forms of such governance are protected areas, and community lands open to limited resource extraction. We studied wildlife occurrences in the north-east Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh, where the Eaglenest Wildlife Sanctuary (EWS) is situated adjacent to community lands governed by the Bugun and Sherdukpen tribes. We conducted transect-based mammal sign surveys and camera trapping for mammals (>0.5 kg), and interviewed members of the resident tribes to understand their hunting practices and causes of wildlife declines. Interviews indicated hunting-mediated declines in the abundances of mammals such as the tiger Panthera tigris, gaur Bos gaurus and river otters Lutrogale and Aonyx species. Larger species such as B. gaurus were much more abundant within EWS than outside of it. Community-managed lands harbored smaller bodied species, including some of conservation importance such as the red panda Ailurus fulgens, clouded leopard Neofelis nebulosa and golden cat Pardofelis temminckii. Our findings show that protected areas may have important non-substitutive values but adjoining community-managed lands may also have important conservation values for a different set of species.

Item ID: 45451
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1469-1795
Keywords: Arunachal Pradesh, community lands, cultural taboos, Eaglenest Wildlife Sanctuary, hunting, protected area
Funders: Rufford Foundation Small Grant (RFSG) , James Cook University Graduate Research Scheme (JCU GRS), Australian Research Council (ARC)
Projects and Grants: ARC Australian Laureate Award
Date Deposited: 08 Jun 2016 07:36
FoR Codes: 41 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 4104 Environmental management > 410401 Conservation and biodiversity @ 100%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960806 Forest and Woodlands Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960599 Ecosystem Assessment and Management not elsewhere classified @ 50%
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