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Appears in Collections:Biological and Environmental Sciences Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Social and Ecological Change over a Decade in a Village Hunting System, Central Gabon
Authors: Coad, Lauren M
Schleicher, Judith
Milner-Gulland, Eleanor J
Marthews, Toby R
Starkey, Malcolm
Manica, Andrea
Balmford, Andrew
Mbombe, W
Diop, Bineni T R
Abernethy, Katharine
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Keywords: alternative livelihoods
central Africa
hunter behavior
postdepletion sustainability
wild meat
África central
carne de animales silvestres
conducta de cazadores
formas de vida alternativas
métodos mixtos
sustentabilidad posterior al agotamiento
Issue Date: Apr-2013
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell for the Society for Conservation Biology
Citation: Coad LM, Schleicher J, Milner-Gulland EJ, Marthews TR, Starkey M, Manica A, Balmford A, Mbombe W, Diop Bineni TR & Abernethy K (2013) Social and Ecological Change over a Decade in a Village Hunting System, Central Gabon, Conservation Biology, 27 (2), pp. 270-280.
Abstract: Despite widespread recognition of the major threat to tropical forest biological diversity and local food security posed by unsustainable bushmeat hunting, virtually no long-term studies tracking the socioecological dynamics of hunting systems have been conducted. We interviewed local hunters and collected detailed hunting data to investigate changes in offtake and hunter characteristics over 10 years (2001-2010) in Dibouka and Kouagna villages, central Gabon, in the context of hunter recollections of longer term trends since the 1950s. To control for changes in hunter behavior, such as trap location and characteristics, we report hunting offtake data per trap. Our results suggest the hunting area was already highly depleted by 2001; local hunters reported that 16 large-bodied prey species had become rare or locally extirpated over the last 60 years. Overall, we observed no significant declines in hunting offtake or changes in species composition from 2001 to 2010, and offtakes per trap increased slightly between 2004 and 2010. However, trapping distance from the villages increased, and there was a switch in hunting techniques; a larger proportion of the catch was hunted with guns in 2010. The number of hunters declined by 20% from 2004 to 2010, and male livelihood activities shifted away from hunting. Hunters with the lowest hunting incomes in 2004 were more likely than successful hunters to have moved away from the village by 2010 (often in response to alternative employment opportunities). Therefore, changes in trap success (potentially related to biological factors) were interacting with system-level changes in hunter number and composition (related to external socioeconomic factors) to produce a relatively static overall offtake. Our results highlight the importance of understanding the small-scale context of hunting to correctly interpret changes or apparent stasis in hunting effort and offtake over time.
Type: Journal Article
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Rights: The publisher does not allow this work to be made publicly available in this Repository. Please use the Request a Copy feature at the foot of the Repository record to request a copy directly from the author. You can only request a copy if you wish to use this work for your own research or private study.
Affiliation: University of Oxford
University of Oxford
Imperial College London
University of Zurich
Wildlife Conservation Society (North America Program)
University of Cambridge
University of Cambridge
Wildlife Conservation Society (North America Program)
Institut de Recherche en Ecologie Tropicale
Biological and Environmental Sciences

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