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Title: Monkeys in maize : Primate crop-raiding behaviour and developing on-farm techniques to mitigate human-wildlife conflict
Author: Wallace, Graham Edward
ISNI:       0000 0004 2701 6723
Awarding Body: Oxford Brookes University
Current Institution: Oxford Brookes University
Date of Award: 2010
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Understanding and addressing conflict between subsistence farmers and wildlife due to crop-raiding is an increasingly crucial conservation issue. Raiding often compromises local food security, reduces tolerance of wildlife, and undermines management efforts. Although many primates consume crops regularly, there are very few quantitative accounts of on-farm primate behaviour or techniques to deter primates from raiding. Working in partnership with farmers, this study was conducted over two primary crop-growing seasons in six villages adjacent to Budongo Forest Reserve, Uganda. Using systematic observational sampling techniques, interviews, and focus groups, the research examined the behaviour of farmers, primates, and other wildlife at farm-forest interfaces to understand the dynamics and parameters of crop-raiding. This information was then used to develop and evaluate a series of effective and locally-appropriate deterrents to raiding. Primates were the predominant diurnal raiders while bush pigs were the mam raiders at night. Six species of primate were observed to raid. Rates of raiding were directly aligned with the availability and maturation of crops, with maize and beans being raided most frequently. Patterns of raiding varied spatially and temporally, and raiding behaviour differed across species. Raiding-group size, duration of raid, and distance travelled onto farm determined crop loss during raiding events. Although crop losses were relatively small they were costly for farmers. Farmers did not detect crop-raiding completely and may underestimate raiding activity. Farmers used a wide range of responses to raids, typically In combination. Deterrents implemented at study farms included alarm systems to improve early detection of wildlife, barriers (nets or fences) and border crops, natural repellents, systematic guarding, and alternative crop locations. Farmers identified benefits and shortcomings for each deterrent, and considered most to be effective and valuable. Insights from. the research may be used to inform intervention strategies to address raiding issues and extend options to mitigate human-wildlife conflict. Recommendations for further research are provided.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available