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UFIR IFAS



Ecotourism
http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ ( Publisher's URL )
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/IR00001672/00001
 Material Information
Title: Ecotourism
Physical Description: Fact Sheet
Creator: Peterson, Nancy
Publisher: University of Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agriculture Sciences, EDIS
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 2003
 Notes
Acquisition: Collected for University of Florida's Institutional Repository by the UFIR Self-Submittal tool. Submitted by Melanie Mercer.
Publication Status: Published
General Note: "First published: September 2000. Minor revision: March 2003."
General Note: "CNR 7"
 Record Information
Source Institution: University of Florida Institutional Repository
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the submitter.
System ID: IR00001672:00001

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CNR-7 Ecotourism1 Center for Natural Resources2 1. This publication was produced by the Center for Natural Resources at the University of Florida. CNR 7 is part of a Program Summary Series. First published: September 2000. Minor revision: March 2003. 1051 McCarty Hall D. Post Office Box 110230. Tel: (352) 392-7622 Fax: (352) 846-2856 Email: cnr_mail@mail.ifas.ufl.edu Web: http://cnr.ifas.ufl.edu/ 2. Nancy Peterson, Program Coordinator This publication was produced by The Center for Natural Resources (CNR). Established in 1973, CNR at the University of Florida plays a major role in the conservation, preservation and restoration of our nation's natural resources by facilitating interdisciplinary collaborations between UF faculty and external stakeholders. The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer authorized to provide research, educational information and other services only to individuals and institutions that function without regard to race, color, sex, age, handicap, or national origin. For information on obtaining other extension publications, contact your county Cooperative Extension Service office. Florida Cooperative Extension Service/Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences/University of Florida/Christine Taylor Waddill, Dean. Though the concept of nature-based tourism is not new, the term "ecotourism" is. Once referred to as "green travel", ecotourism is defined as a "recreational and educational experience that encourages greater understanding of the natural and cultural resources of an area". Florida has always been a popular locale for bird-watching and trail-hiking, but planners have only just begun to tap into its potential in this growing industry. However, throughout the stages of development planners should take deliberate steps to prevent the destruction of the natural resources upon which ecotourism depends. Figure 1. Ecotoursim offers something for everyone Credits: A March 1996 article in Florida Trend, "Marketing the Real Florida," asserts that nature tourism is the fastest-growing segment of the U.S. market, increasing 30% a year. In 1996, 3.6 million Floridians 16 years and older participated in some wildlife-related activity; these residents, plus nonresidents, provided an economic output of $5.5 billion for wildlifeassociated recreation in Florida in 1996. This economic output is equal to 66% of Florida's $7.6 billion citrus industry. While Florida is economically tourist dependent, too many "eco" tourists can damage the natural resources which attract them -especially if tourists are unaware of the repercussions of their actions. (For example, boaters/jetskiers driving too close to rookeries and hikers/campers crushing vegetation, removing logs for firewood and blocking wildlife traffic.) "Ecotourism," therefore, is shifting from a definition of a specialized form of tourism to a set of distinguishing criteria applied to any nature-related tourism. Stephen Holland, Associate Professor of The Center for Tourism, Research, and Development through the UF College of Health and Human

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Ecotourism 2 Figure 2. Toursits, who enjoy water-related activities, are attracted to Key West Credits: Performance, defines ecotourism as having the following criteria: Natural resource based -Exposure to a relatively undeveloped, natural environment. Specific clientele -Outdoor lovers/wildlife watchers: According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 77 million Americans over the age of 16 (40% of adult population) enjoyed some form of wildlife-related recreation in 1996. Resource-preserving -educating ecotourists to be nature-sensitive and limiting the number of visitors to that which an area can handle. Economic advantages of appreciative use -preserving nature by selling it. (for example, measuring the returnable ecotourism value of a lion vs. the one-time value of a lion's hide). Economic support of local economies -money goes to local businesses, rewarding the choice of environmentally friendly land use vs. alternatives (e.g., commercial development). Because ecotourism involves interdependent environmental, political, social and economic factors, such a topic directly or indirectly concerns UF researchers and extension agents from a wide variety of backgrounds. Figure 3. The Florida panther (Panthera floridanus). UF Contacts Stephen Holland Recreation, Parks and Tourism (352) 392-4042 ext 313 sholland@hhp.ufl.edu Taylor Stein Forest Resources & Conservation Dept. (352) 846-0860 tstein@ufl.edu Gustavo Antonini Geography Dept. (352) 392-6233 creslag@nervm.nerdc.ufl.edu Gerald Culen Family Youth & Community Sciences Dept. (352) 846-1001 ext 250 grculen@mail.ifas.ufl.edu Eleanor Foerste Florida Cooperative Extension Agent Osceola County Specific (407) 846-418 ecfoerste@mail.ifas.ufl.edu Martin Main Wildlife Ecology & Conservation Dept. SW FL Research & Education Center Immokalee (941) 658-3400 mbma@icon.imok.ufl.edu Frank Mazzotti Associate Professor, University of Florida (954) 614 2369 fjma@mail.ifas.ufl.edu Other Agencies Dennis David Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWCC) (352) 955-2230 davidd@gfc.state.fl.us

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Ecotourism 3 John Waldron Forest Recreation Coordinator Florida Division of Forestry (850) 414-9852 waldroj@doacs.state.fl.us Department of Environmental Protection Parks & Recreation Division (850) 488-1554 http://tlhwww.1.dep.state.fl.us/parks/info/ ecotourism.html Visit Florida Florida, USA http://www.flausa.com/