The attitude of Horand’s villagers toward wildlife and determinants of human-wolf conflict, East Azerbaijan, Iran

Document Type: Research Paper

Authors

Department of Environmental Science, Tabriz Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tabriz, Iran

Abstract

The study aimed to investigate the attitudes of the villagers of Horand County, East-Azerbaijan about wildlife species with the focus on eight species and to determine the main causes of their conflict with the gray wolf. The data was collected using a semi-structured questionnaire during the spring and summer 2016. In 37 randomly selected villages, households were categorized as farmer-shepherd, shepherd, or farmer. In each village, 10% of the households belonging to each of the three groups were randomly selected and an interview was conducted with senior households.The results exhibited that three carnivorous species i.e. bear, hyaena and gray wolf were classified as problematic species along with boar, but the people were negative in their views toward hyaena and jackal than gray wolf and bear. The intensity of human-wolf conflict was positively influenced by an increase in respondents’ number of income sources, as well as by livestock disease-related losses. However, respondents’ increased awareness of wildlife was correlated with the decreased intensity of the human-wolf conflict. These results suggest that biodiversity conservation programs should prioritize attention to shepherd-farmers in managing the human-wolf conflict in Horand County.

Keywords


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