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Ekdahl, Cassandra, 2012. Attitudes towards wildlife conservation in Kenya : comparison of rural and urban perspectives. First cycle, G2E. Skara: SLU, Dept. of Animal Environment and Health

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Abstract

Human-wildlife conflicts are widespread in many parts of Kenya and are posing great difficulties in the work of wildlife conservation. Up until recently, most wildlife conservation efforts were solely concentrated to protected areas with adjacent rural communities having little or no involvement. However, when working with conservation projects, it is vital to not only work with directly affected factors, such as the animals and the environment, but also with the nearby communities and the local people. Consequently, studies like this one, concerning the feelings and opinions of the local people towards the environment and wildlife will be of great help in order to secure a future for both parties. In this context, it is also important to acknowledge that wildlife conservation to a large extent is dependent upon public acceptance and, with a large part of the countries inhabitants living in cities, it is important to get the opinions of people living in urban areas as well.

Attitudes and opinions towards wildlife are affected by a multitude of factors. The factor studied in this paper, that can have profound effects on perceptions and attitudes towards wildlife conservation, is place of residence. This study’s primary focus was placed upon the attitudes of Kenyan citizens on the subject of wildlife conservation, with an emphasis on rural residents and as contrasted with urban residents. The study also aimed to study the success of a community-based conservation (CBC) project in regards to the opinions and attitudes of the rural residents living within the conservation area.

It was found that the majority of the respondents (both rural and urban) showed positive attitudes towards wildlife conservation in general. However, marked differences in values between the two samples were found. The urbanites displayed a wide array of different values towards the environment and wildlife, while all rural participants shared the same utilitarian view. In addition, the results showed that the rural participants were of a much more positive attitude than anticipated if compared to previous published research and in this specific case, these findings can be correlated with the CBC project applied in that region. Further the results found in this study indicate that rural communities show more favourable attitudes towards wildlife conservation if they perceive they are receiving enough benefits from the conservation project to outweigh the costs of such work. This suggests that CBC can be used effectively both in regards of having a successful conservation and as a means of generating further development of rural communities as well as creating favourable attitudes towards conservation.

Main title:Attitudes towards wildlife conservation in Kenya
Subtitle:comparison of rural and urban perspectives
Authors:Ekdahl, Cassandra
Supervisor:Jung, Jens
Examiner:Isaksson, Daniel
Series:Studentarbete (Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet, Institutionen för husdjurens miljö och hälsa)
Volume/Sequential designation:401
Year of Publication:2012
Level and depth descriptor:First cycle, G2E
Student's programme affiliation:VK002 Ethology and Animal Welfare - Bachelor's Programme 180 HEC
Department:(VH) > Dept. of Animal Environment and Health
Keywords:attitudes, wildlife, conservation, kenya
URN:NBN:urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-s-1479
Permanent URL:
http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-s-1479
Subjects:Nature conservation and land resources
Language:English
Deposited On:14 Aug 2012 14:09
Metadata Last Modified:14 Aug 2012 14:09

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