Social and Economic Dimensions of the Bushmeat Trade in Cross River State Nigeria

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Social and Economic Dimensions of the Bushmeat Trade in Cross River State Nigeria An Ethno-Biological Appraoch to Conservation
Vath, Carrie L
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University of Florida
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Doctorate ( Ph.D.)
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University of Florida
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Interdisciplinary Ecology
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Biodiversity conservation ( jstor )
Community forestry ( jstor )
Environmental conservation ( jstor )
Forest communities ( jstor )
Forests ( jstor )
Hunting ( jstor )
Primates ( jstor )
Species ( jstor )
Wildlife ( jstor )
Wildlife conservation ( jstor )
Interdisciplinary Ecology -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
africa -- bushmeat -- conservation -- nigeria
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theses ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent) ( marcgt )
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Interdisciplinary Ecology thesis, Ph.D.


Two important concepts for understanding sustainability are the social and economic dimensions of a system. These concepts are of great utility in assessing the effects of human disturbance on biodiversity, natural resource management and developing environmental policies. Cross River State, Nigeria, considered one of Africas biodiversity hotspots, is an ideal location to study the social and economic dimensions of the bushmeat trade because it has high population densities and high rates of deforestation, which can influence local sustainability. This study aims to answer the following questions: (1) How do declines in wildlife influence rural bushmeat trade and hunters livelihoods? (2) What do local community members think about wildlife and resource conservation? and (3) Is a local NGO meeting its conservation objectives and goals? Using standardized interviews and questionnaires of 798 individuals, self-reported hunter off-take and bushmeat processing shed censuses, informal interviews, and participant observation this study found that hunters livelihoods are threatened by declining wildlife trends; community members are aware of faunal declines but show no desire to change their current consumption of wildlife. The NGO has been successful in cultivating support for certain aspects of wildlife and resource conservation, but not in others. Wildlife harvest was unevenly distributed within the catchment areas in the community forests; hunters avoided traveling farther than they had to as long as game was encountered, and that an absence of large game indicates faunal declines within the community forests. Biomass and consumer preference strongly influenced selling price .Participation with a non-governmental organization (NGO) through contact and participation with livelihood projects increased support for conservation and improved some pro-environment behaviors. This study provides one of the first in-depth examinations of the rural bushmeat trade in this area and it can be used as a model for other research. ( en )
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Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Florida, 2014.
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by Carrie L Vath.

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2014 Carrie L. Vath


T he people and wildlife that live in and around the villages of Iko Esai, Agoi Ibami, and Owai.


4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS Many people have supported me throughout my dissertation. This thesis would not be possible without unwavering support. I would also like to thank my supervisory committee, Drs. Martha Monroe, Abraham Goldman and Jose Miguel Ponciano for assisting me throughout the process. I would like to thank my parents, Charles and Mary Vath for cultivating my environmental ethic at a young age and always encouraging me in my academic pursuits. The University of Florida Teaching Center (Winifred Cooke, Rob Bailey, Denise Dixon, and Penny Di Palma) which has been my primary funding source throughout my graduate career and my home away from home I am forever grateful to CERCOPAN for allowing me to conduct my research and for all the on the ground support a conservation biologist could ask for Finally, I would like to thank my friends whose laughter and support gave me the strength to keep pushing forward. In particular, Daniel Stirling, Jackson Frachette, Carson Phillips, Amy Martinelli, Claire Sheller, Kacy Mixon, JJ Buchholz and Kelda Vath Mikkelson


5 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 4 LIST OF TABLES ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 7 LIST OF FIGURES ................................ ................................ ................................ .......... 8 ABSTRACT ................................ ................................ ................................ ..................... 9 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 11 2 PATTERNS AND SELLING PRICE ................................ ................................ ........ 17 Research Questions ................................ ................................ ............................... 19 Methods ................................ ................................ ................................ .................. 20 Site Profile: Iko Community Forest, Cross River State, Nigeria ........................ 20 Data Collection ................................ ................................ ................................ 22 Analysis ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 24 Results ................................ ................................ ................................ ............. 24 Variation of the Harvest ................................ ................................ .................... 24 Factors Influencing Selling Price ................................ ................................ ...... 25 Discussion ................................ ................................ ................................ .............. 26 3 HUNTER PROFILES AND STRATEGIES ................................ .............................. 35 Research Questions ................................ ................................ ............................... 36 Methods ................................ ................................ ................................ .................. 37 Study Area ................................ ................................ ................................ ........ 37 Sampling Design ................................ ................................ .............................. 38 Interviews ................................ ................................ ................................ ......... 38 Analysis ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 39 Results ................................ ................................ ................................ .................... 40 Hunting Patterns ................................ ................................ ............................... 40 Perceived Abundance ................................ ................................ ...................... 41 Economic Livelihoods ................................ ................................ ....................... 43 Discussi on ................................ ................................ ................................ .............. 44 Impacts of Hunting on Species Abundance ................................ ...................... 44 Significance of Hunting and Trade for Livelihoods ................................ ........... 46 Conclusions ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 47


6 4 NGO IMPACT ON SUPPORT FOR CONSERVATION ................................ .......... 56 Methods ................................ ................................ ................................ .................. 59 Study Area ................................ ................................ ................................ ........ 59 Communities ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 60 Local Non Govern mental Organization: CERCOPAN ................................ ...... 61 Data Collection ................................ ................................ ................................ 64 Analysis ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 66 Results ................................ ................................ ................................ .................... 67 Discussion ................................ ................................ ................................ .............. 71 5 CONCLUSION ................................ ................................ ................................ ........ 80 Conclusion for Hunter P atterns and Bushmeat Trade ................................ ............ 80 Summary of Key Findings for Hunter Behavior and Harvest ............................ 80 Implications of Findings for Hunter Behavior and Harvest for Conservation .... 81 Recommendations for CERCOPAN ................................ ................................ 81 Institute Hunter Auto Regulation ................................ ................................ ...... 81 Increase Monitoring and Evaluation ................................ ................................ 82 Conclusion for NGO s Impact on Conservation Attitudes and Behavior Study ........ 82 Summary of Key Findings ................................ ................................ ................ 82 Recommendations for CERCOPAN ................................ ................................ 83 Concluding Remark ................................ ................................ .......................... 83 LIST OF REFERENCES ................................ ................................ ............................... 85 BIOGRAPHIC AL SKETCH ................................ ................................ ............................ 92


7 LIST OF TABLES Table page 3 1 Description of three communities in Cross River State, Nigeria ......................... 51 3 2 Perceived abundance of selected wildlife species (1= rare; 3 = abundant) ........ 53 3 3 Cost (USD) of hunting equipment for the three communities ............................. 54 3 4 Village selling price versus highway price ................................ .......................... 55 3 5 Comparison of estimated village selling price for selected species .................... 55 4 1 Description of three communities that participated in the study .......................... 77 4 2 Mean survey scores and wealth indicators for the three communities ................ 78


8 LIST OF FIGURES Figure page 2 1 Map of Iko Community Forest with shed locations ................................ ............. 31 2 2 The proportion of self reported animal off take (n=289) by volunteer hunters (n=3) resulting from 54 hunting trips. ................................ ................................ .. 32 2 3 Least square (LS) means of selling price (USD) for selected species. ............... 33 2 4 Least square (LS) mean of selling price (USD) for catchment areas with whole sale and price/kg. ................................ ................................ ..................... 34 3 1 Agoi Forest Reserve (44km 2 ) and Iko Community Forest (210km 2 ) with the three communities in the study Agoi Ibami, Iko Esai, and Owai and the Oban division(3,000km 2 ) of the Cross River State, National Park ............................... 50 3 2 Image of hunting shed in the Iko Community forest(left) and close up of carcasses being smoked in the shed (right). ................................ ...................... 51 3 3 Reported hunting strategy employed by hunters in the three communities ........ 52 3 4 Proportion of hunters (Agoi Ibami n = 79; IkoEsai n= 81; and Owai n = 63) (210km 2 ) and Agoi Forest Reserve (44km 2 ) in Cross River State, Nigeria ......... 54 4 1 Map of the three communities in the study Agoi Ibami, Iko Esai, and Owai and their proximity to CERCOPAN. ................................ ................................ .... 76 4 2 Principle component analysis showing the correlation between conservation variables. ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 79


9 Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC DIMENSIONS OF THE BUSHMEAT TRADE IN CROSS RIVER STATE NIGERIA: AN ETHNO BIOLOGICAL APPR OA CH TO CONSERVATION By Carrie L. Vath May 20 14 Chair: Scott K. Robinson Major: Interdisciplinary Ecology The harvest of wildlife allows humans to meet nutritional, economic, medicinal, cultural, and recreational needs S ustaining faunal populations therefore, is fundamental for human well being. The manner in which wildlife are best preserved and protected continues to be a heated debate among biologists and social scientists. At the center of this controversy is the question do we protect nature from humans through exclusion or do we incorporate humans into conservation management plans? Cross River State t o study the social and economic dimensions of the bushmeat trade because it has the largest remaining tracts of intact forests within Nigeria, local population densities are high, and there is increasing pressure for conversion of forests to agricultural lands which influence local sustainability This study aims to answer the following questions: (1) how do declines in wildlife influence rural bushmeat trade and hunter s elihoods? (2) What do local community members think about wildl ife and resource conservation? A nd (3) Is a local NGO (Non Governmental Organization) meeting its conservation objectives and goals?


10 Using standardized interviews and questionnaires of 798 in dividuals, self reported hunter off take and bushmeat processing shed censuses, informal interviews and participant observation this study found that hunters livelihoods are threaten ed by declining wildlife populations and community members are aware of faunal declines but show no desire to change their current consumption of wildlife. W ildlife harvest was unevenly distributed within the catchment areas in the community forests ; hunters avoid ed traveling farther than they had to as long as game wa s encountered W hen larger game was encountered, it was harvested farther from the village and agricultural lands, and the low levels of encounters with large game throughout the study area indicates faunal declines within the community forests Species b iom ass and consumer preference strongly influence d selling price. P articipation with the local conservation NGO through contact (education programs, village presence, and outreach) and participation wi th livelihood projects increased suppo rt for conservation and improved some pro environment behaviors Misconceptions about wildlife reproductive biology and the concept of extinction will need to be addressed if the incorporation of community members is to be successful in gaining local support for drill ( Mandrillus leucophaeus ) conservation. Our results demonstrate that the use of a social and economic lens to exam the rural bushmeat trade can be used as a model for other research that seeks to understand the sustainability of harvest in other systems, suc h as marine and non timber forest product removal


11 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION I ncreasing human populations coupled with increasing rates of deforestation threat en global biodiversity and pose major challenges to conservation These trends strain wildlife an d the natural resources on which people depend H ow do we protect and preserve species and habitats in perpetuity in the face of these ever mounting challenges? Historically p reservation and protection of species and habitat were the primary goal s of cons ervation policies (Roe became the main form of conservation in Africa, but rather than preserving spectacular scenery the emphasis was on selecting areas for protection of large game populations National parks were originally created to make th e scenery available to everyone but these new fortress parks centered on large game viewed exploitation of game by people as the main problem and the main objective was to reduce the h uman threat by polici ng and fin ing individuals who entered the park illegally. This protectionist approach sometimes resulted in a lack of trust and animosity between the local communities and the wildlife authorities (Songorwa et al 2000). It became clear by the 1970s and e arly 1980s that the fortress model was not successful in preserving or protecting wildlife over the long term, especially in situations in which local people lived in poverty and were economically dependent on resources available in the park. This link bet ween po verty and ecological impacts w as first raised a t The Stockholm Conference in 1972 (Roe 2008) At this meeting, s cientists realized that a more holistic approach, one that would take into account the ecology, culture, and economics of a s ystem was ne cessar y if conservation goals and objectives were to be


12 reached. In an effort to incorporate community members into conservation efforts to strengthen wildlife management two participatory approaches to conservation emerged. The first was essentially a passive participatory approach, known as community conservation services, and aimed to promote a conservation ethic through education. If a conservation ethic was cultivated in local community members it was thought that opposition to parks would be reduce d and that the economic incentives related to poaching would be negated (Songorwa et al. 2000). Blanchard and Monroe (1990) findings in the North Shore of the Gulf of St. Lawrence demonstrate d how depleted seabird populations c ould be restored through in formation based education programs while maintaining and respecting the integrity of local culture. The second approach involved more active participation and is known as community based conservation (CBC), which aim s to give the resources back to the peo pled so they could own, control, manage and benefit their resources. This approach emphasizes the protection of biodiversity through economic incentives and profit making in the form of tourism, sport hunting, and other associated revenue generating servic es (Songorwa et al. 2000). White and Vogt (2000) reported examples of successful community based resource management programs focusing on reef conservation that resulted in declines in exploitation. Maliao et al (2009) found when local fishing communities were empowered by community based management programs they had strong support for conservation but only a limited beneficial impact on improving local fisheries. These two approaches moved away from species and habitat centered conservation toward addre ss ing rights in conservation policy. However,


13 by the people oriented approach to biodiversity conservation was not working as well as anticipated and prote cted areas have had proven conservation success (Hutton et al. 2005). Wilshusen et al. (2002) defended community based approaches and suggest ed that some programs had fail ed, but mainly because of failures of implementation rather than concept More recently, a combination of approaches (the use of protected areas and passive and active participation) has been advocated if local rights, community capacity, governance, and revenue are considered (Balint 2006) It is clear that with the scale a nd magnitude of threats facing biodiversity whichever conservation effort is selected it must be ecologically sound, and socially and politically feasible It is important to recognize that different regions will require varying approaches to conservati on and management. One of the major differences between southern Africa and West Africa are land tenure issues. Private conservation is restricted to South Africa, Namibia, and Zimbabwe because these countries have strong land ownership laws (Child, 2004). for example, has been hailed as a community based conservation success because the communities own the wildlife that they sell which promotes the value of wildlife ( Child et al. 1997). Savannah systems such as those in Zimba bwe may lend themselves to development through ecotourism and sport hunting because the large megafauna are easy to see especially if the governments in these countries are relatively stable such as those in Tanzania and Kenya In western Africa, however, local people do not have legal land tenure rights, the human population densities are high, the countries have bad reputations for government al corruption and many are considered unsafe for tourists. Additionally


14 viewing animals in forested environments is very difficult and the bushmeat trade is quickly diminishing the remaining wildlife. Although p rotected areas and community based conservation models have different agendas and conservation goals and objectives both strive to maintain a sustainable system Ecological sustainability is defined as practices that do not irreversibly deplete resources or degrade the habitat Understanding what drives economic sustainability, defined as practices that will consistently make money over a cer tain period of time and not cause a major collapse or instab ility within the local economy, could be the key to conservation practices that can be sustained indefinitely. The bushmeat trade is an example of a system that requires both ecological and econom ic sustainability to be successful. Wildlife require certain ecological factors such as habitat area, species population size, and intact food webs (including key predators) to ensure reproductive success People who depend on the wildlife are constrained by economic considerations such as supply and demand that dictate success in a market system. For this reason, the bushmeat trade provides an outstanding opportunity for a case history study of incorporating human needs into an ecological system which is the reason I chose to study this system in Cross River State, Nigeria. The bushmeat trade can be divided into subsistence and commercial trade. Subsistence hunting is for self consumption and game is either captured in the forest or on an farm The commercial trade is for profit and game is harvested from a forested area. C ommercial trade can be further divided into urban and rural markets. For the urban market game is harvested in one location and transported to an urban center. In the rural t rade, game is harvested and sold locally. D ef au nation is considered


15 especially likely when urban markets are also being supplied. Defaunation in turn can level where they are effectively ecologically extinct. Empty forests may retain sm all populations of most species, but the ecological roles they formerly played in the system are lost. The term was f irst coined by Redford in 1992. The demands placed on wildlife and natural resources increase as human popu lation densities rise and urbanization spreads resulting in severe declines of l arge animals that play key roles in seed dispersal, pollination, seed predation, herbivory, and predation (Redford 1992). Cowlishaw and Dunbar (2000) note d that primates and un gulates are the primary faunal groups that are harvested for subsistence and the bushmeat trade. Primates function as seed dispersers and seed predato rs in forest ecosystems (Strier 2003) and ungulates act as the primary herbivores (Corlett 2007). If these groups are removed from the forest community the plant diversity and overall structure could be affected negatively. Developing successful management plans that address the needs of the wildlife and the needs of the local people are therefore critical to maintaining both biodiversity and ecosystem function For this reason, my research ask s the question: How can we work with humans involved in the bushmeat trade to reduce their negative impact on wildlife and ecosystems ? This dissertation is divided into three part s. The first two chapters use hunter self reported offtake, patrol forest censuses, and hunter interviews to quantify bushmeat hunting in a specific area of southeastern Nigeria. The goal of this study is to search for evidence of prey depletion close to edges of habitats or population centers and to


16 Such data can eventually be used to optimize the size of forest reserves to sustain populations or essential seed dispersers such as primates. The third part of the dissertati on attempts to measure the impact of a local NGO on the bushmeat trade and conservation attitudes This NGO has conducted environmental education programs, community outreach, and alternative protein livelihood projects but we know little about the extent to which their activities actually improve attitudes towards conservation. Using questionnaires I attempt to describe com knowledge, attitudes and support toward wildlife and natural resource conservation.


17 CHAPTER 2 PATTERNS AND SELLING PRICE Levels of bushmeat hunting in west and central Africa are thought to be increasingly unsustainable because of high human population growth and deforestation (Bakarr et al. 2001; Fa et al. 2002; Kumpel et al. 2010 ). Understanding the ecological and social ramifications of unsustainable hunting is a critical i ssue for wildlife conservation and human well being. Ecologically unsustainable hunting threatens the survival of hunted species and the functioning of ecosystems. Large birds, primates, and terrestrial herbivores are important dispersal agents for large f leshy fruits ; therefore, the elimination of these animals through hunting can affect plant regeneration and forest succession (Terborgh 2008; Effiom et al. 2013). In many regions of Africa, bushmeat is the main source of protein and an important source of income for rural people (Wilkie et al. 2005); unsustainable hunting practices can therefore affect food security and understanding their strategies and decision making is needed to e nsure that a valued resource is not depleted. With the increase of conservation awareness among developed countries, sustainability has become an often used term but the definition differs among different sectors of conservation. In ecological terms sustai nability implies practices that do not irreversibly deplete resources or degrade the habitat E conomic sustainability is defined as practices that will consistently make money over a certain period of time and not cause a major collapse or instability with in the local economy (Borgerhoff Mulder & Coppolillo, 2005). The two are closely connected. I f the resource (bushmeat) is depleted then livelihoods and food security of local people are also affected. Such depletion is


18 especially likely when bushmeat hunte rs are supplying both the rural (local) needs of people and the urban market in which game is harvested in a rural forest and then transported either to a n urban area or to a road where it is then sold. In an effort to understand the patterns of bushmeat c onsumption data have been collected from household interviews (Coad et al. 2010), market (urban and rural) surveys and censuses (Fa et al 2006; Enang 2008; Okiwelu 2009; Macdonald et al. 2011), roadside surveys (Ma rtin 1983), hunter interviews (V an Vliet & Nasi 2008; Kumpel et al. 2010) and self reported hunter off take (Rist et al 2009; Rao et al 2011). Human forager prey models have been used to understand the extent to which hunting levels are sustainable. Optimal foraging theory focuses on which species are included in the diet, patch choice and how long to stay in a given patch. Although thes e models were not developed with humans in mind, they have been applied to human behavioral ecology. To complement this theory diet breadth models have been used to describe hunting strategies and assume that foragers behave in a way that maximizes their energy in take (Levi et al. 2011). Hunters returning to villages are analogous to animals such as nesting birds that must return to central places where they deliver food. Such of food within patches by the time and energy needed to return to and from their villages. In forests where prey has been heavily hunted species abundance usually declines with decreasing distance to human disturbance. As a result hunters must either tra vel a greater distance in search of the same prey or remain close and hunt a wider variety of prey that might be of lower value to the hunter (Levi et al. 2011) Alternatively, other factors such as the price of ammunition and shotguns ( Kumpel et al 2006; Wright


19 and Priston 2010) taste preferences (Koster et al 2010) market prices for meat ( Allebone Webb et al 2011) the proximity of the national park, and the difficulty of carrying large prey long distances for humans might influence prey choice and, hence, the size of areas needed for sustainable hunting. Nigeria is an ideal location to study the bushmeat trade because it is the most populous country in Africa with 168 million people (World B ank 2013), approximately 65% of the population subsists on l ess than $1.25 a day, it ranks 156 th out of 187 on th e human development index (UNDP 2011), and it has high regional b iodiversity including the endangered Cross River gorilla ( Gorilla gorilla diehli ) and drill monkey ( Mandrillus leucophaeus ). There have be en many studies in Nigeria that have documented species diversity and quantity of bushmeat being sold in city markets or consumed by families (Martin 1983; Fa et al 2006; Bifarin et al. 2008; Eniang et al. 2008; Okiwelu 2009; Ogunjemite et al. 2010; McDon ald et al. 2011; McDonald et al. 2012 ) but these studies do not report the catchment area from which these animals were taken, and as a result, we cannot determine if this level of harvest is sustainable over the long run. W e can infer the scale of bushmea t consumption from these studies, but we are unable to address the issues of sustainability because we do not know if the bushmeat sold in an urban or rural market came from 1,000 ha or 1,000km 2 of forest (Wilkie and Carpenter 1999) Research Questions The aim of this study was to document spatial patterns of harvest and factors that influenced hunter s selection of species and their selling price. Sp atial p atterns of harvest can provide insight into ecological sustainability while selling price can be u sed


20 to determine the economic sustainability of the harvest in this area. B ased on these objectives, I ask the following questions : 1. Do h unter self reported harvest and patrol harvest censuses both provide equivalent data on hunter harvest? 2. Does species c omposition of the hunted animals vary based on distance to village and distance to agricultural lands? 3. As predicted by optimal foraging theory do hunters charge more for species harvested farther from the village than closer to the village ? 4. Are s peci es s old at higher prices targeted by hunters more than species with a lower selling price ? 5. What are the relative contributions of s pecies abundance, species biomass, hunter effort, hunter risk, and consumer preference on hun ter s selling price? I used the hunter off take records and patrol forest surveys to examine where species were harvested and the hunter off take records to determine if mean body mass, consumer preference, perceived abundance, effort, and risk (harvest of illegal species) influ enced hunters when determining selling price. Our results highligh t the need to understand hunter s motivations and strategies related to game removal as a means to improve policies and programs aimed at promoting sustainable use of wild animals in rural s ettings. Methods Site Profile: Iko Community Forest, Cross River State, Nigeria The Iko Community Forest (210 km 2 ) is located on the western flank of the Oban division (3,000 km 2 ) of Cross River National Park. Most people living in the area depend on wild life as a source of daily protein and practice slash and burn and shifting cultivation agriculture. Hunters participate in the rural bushmeat trade, the selling of game that is harvested locally and sold to local community members, and rarely sell


21 game for the urban trade. Hunters sell harvested game to individual buyers or ere is no open display of whole sale trade. and seasoned) and is so ld in small pieces. Because much of this trade is hidden it is difficult to conduct market surveys to determine the amount of wildlife being harvested ; instead, surveys of hunting sheds and use of self reported hunter off take were needed to measure the b ushmeat trade. The local NGO, Centre for Education, Research, and Conservation of Primates and Nature ( CERCOPAN ) has been working in the village of Iko Esai since 2001 to conserve partnerships, education, primate rehabilitation and research With the support of the community they implemented a multiple use design in the community forest which is divided into three areas: (1) core = 4km 2 (2) research = 35km 2 and (3) conservation = 171km 2 All community members are prohibited from entering the core area and CERCOPAN staff patrol the area seven days a week 24 hours a day. Nondestructive human activities such as hunting and non timber forest product removal are permitted in the research and conservation area. Community members have constructed small sheds throughout these two areas that serve as a sleeping location and as processing sites for butche ring/smoking bushmeat (Fig. 2 1). In January of 2011 CERCOPAN enforce the national ban on buying, selling, and hunting of primates under decree 11, 1985 (CERCOPAN 2011)


22 The forest structure in the study area is a patchwork of primary, secondary, and gallery forests with major light gaps. The climate is tropical with a four month dry season (November February) and a long rainy season (March October). Annual rainfall is over 4000 mm a nd the temperature varies from 15 33C (WWF 2001). In spite of the establishment of the Cross River National Park and the conservation efforts from the Cross River State Forestry Commission, the integrity of the tropical forests in this region continue to be threatened by escalating hunting, timber extraction and conversion of forests to agricultural lands (CERCOPAN 2011) Data Collection The study was conducted between March 2011 and October 2011 in Iko Esai (5 40 N, 8 13 ouncil and the Chief Hunter was obtained to collect data At a hunters group meeting (attended by 20 of the 85 hunters in the hunter s group) I asked for volunteers to share their weekly off take each week and answer questions Hunters were told that there would be no financial compensation for participating in the study and that their names would be withheld from all records so that they were free to report illegal activities. Five volunteered to disclose their weekly off take Two of the volunteer hunters, however, stopped hunting (one broke his gun and the other moved to Calabar) one month into the study. I visited each volunteer hunter weekly at their home on the morning of the market day to record the self reported off tak e. Data collected consisted of where (nearest shed location), when (day/night), how (gun, dog, trap, or combination), sex (male/female), fate (sold or kept for self cons umption), selling location (village of highway), and selling


23 price were also recorded. Additionally, hunters were asked if they encountered specific large vertebrate species (elephant, chimpanzee, and buffalo) and where (nearest hunting shed location). Ce nsuses of carcasses and hunters encountered at hunting sheds were conducted by the researcher and trained CERCOPAN patrol staff. These weekly forest patrols were conducted Monday through Thursday between April and October 2011. Census routes were randomly selected by the researcher and/or CERCOPAN manager but attention was paid to surveying the greatest number of hunting sheds. Routes were changed weekly so that hunters harvesting illegal species would be unaware of the patrols location. If an illegal harv name and the number of illegal carcasses that were present. All offenders were Illegal resource collection is very difficult to measure accura tely (Infield & Namara 2001; Moorman 2006). When pilot testing I found that most hunters were willing to disclose illegal behavior because of a lack of enforcement and no local taboo against committing the illegal act of shooting monkeys. In addition vol unteer hunters were told that their identity and any illegal behavior they performed would not be disclosed to Before the start of analysis hunting sheds (n= 30) were labeled as either an wit hin 2km of between 3 km and 5 km from agricultural land and the national park boundary; n= 10) national park boundary and furthest from agricultural lands; n= 6). This categorical descri


24 farms along the edge of the forest. The village center was used to determine the distance of each shed to the village. Analysis I investigated differences between self reported hu nter off take and patrol censuses with Pearson chi square test. A one way analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to compare harvest between catchment areas (edge, middle, interior), distance to village, and individual sheds. A multiple regression was used t o test the influence of body mass, consumer preference, perceived abundance, effort, and risk on selling price. Results Variation of the H arvest Volunteer off take hunters self reported 54 hunting trips equaling 189 days and patrol conducted 22 hunting sh ed surveys totaling 78 days in the forest during the seven month study. Overall, a total of 568 carcasses correspond ing to 24 species were recorded This represents a total biomass of about 5, 000 kg. Three groups of mammals: ungulates (six species), rodent s (two species), and primates (seven species) made up the bulk of the animals hunted: they accounted for 46.8%, 26.9%, and 14.8% of the total number of carcasses, respectively, and 72.7%, 8.1%, and 10.4% of the total biomass. There was a significant differ 2 = 50.52, df= 6, p = < 0.001) between hunter and patrol off take; but no significant differences ( 2 = 4.18, df= 4, p = 0.38) between individual hunters and their harvest of primates, rodents, ungulates. reported harvest of ungulates and primates was greater than what patrol encountered with the opposite being true for rodents (Fig. 2 2). According to the combined data set t he four most frequently killed animals were blue duiker ( Cephalophus monticolor ),


25 brush tailed porcupine ( Atherurus africanus ), bay duiker ( Cephalophus dorsalis ), and putty nose monkey ( Cercopithecus nictitans ). Combined they represented 75.5% of the carcasses harvested. The number of mammal species originating from the different catchment areas (edge, middle, interior) ranged widely from 8 to 20 species (mean = 15, SD 6). The off take was unevenly distributed among the three areas 2 = 39.35, df= 12, p = < 0.001) with 78% of off single shed loca ted in the middle of the area. Ungulates dominated the trade in all sections of the forest, both in number of carcasses (n=266) and body mass (3,640 kg). The three most common species were the same for all three areas: blue duiker ( Cephalophus monticolor ), brush tailed porcupine ( Atherurus africanus ), and bay duiker ( Cephalophus dorsalis ) Distance to village ( f =10.5, df= 2, p =<0.001) and distance to agriculture ( f =5.5, df= 2, p = 0.004) had strong significance with larger game being harvested farther from t he village and agri cultural lands. Factors Influencing Selling P rice Species size ( f =2664.92, df= 1, p = <0.001) and consumer preference ( f =6.02, df= 2, p = 0.002) were the most significant factors influencing hunter selling price. Perceived species abundance ( f =2.03, df= 2, p = 0.132), hunter effort (defined as distance traveled) ( f =1.80, df= 2, p = 0.167) and risk (defined as harvesting illegal species) ( f =1.72, df= 1, p = 0.190) did not influence selling price. Focusing on species selected due to thei r high off take in all catchment areas species ( f =150.67, df= 4, p = <0.001) and catchment area ( f =7.68, df= 2, p = 0.0006) influenced their sell ing price. When using the whole sale price hunters charge d more for larger game (Fig. 2 3a) but when using price /kg hunte r s made more profit for species


26 with high er consumer preferences (Fig. 2 3b). Hunters charged more money for species harvested in the interior catchment area than in the middle and edge for both whole sale price and price/kg (Fig. 2 4). Discussi on The consequences of faunal decline can be far reaching both socially and ecologically. The loss of protein and income from wildlife will affect food security and hunters will be forc ed to target smaller and less eco nomically desirable species such as blue duiker, porcupine, and cane rats. The loss of ecologically significant species such as seed dispersers and ecosystem engineers can have long term repercussions for ecosystem structur e and function. I found that the bushmeat trade in the Iko Community Forest focused on two groups of species, ungulates and rodents. This matches MacDonald et al (2011) and Fa et al (2006) who found that ungulates and rodents dominated the rural markets in southeastern Nigeria. This focus is most likely related to the high abundance of these species in Afric an moist forests (Fa and Purvis 1997) and their ability to persist in disturbed areas. Although I am confident in the hunters self reported off take of illegal species (primates) I feel that patrol did not report illegal hunting unless the researcher or a CERCOPAN foreign volunteer was present. Therefore, it is likely that the patrol reported offtake underestimates primate harvest. Although I was unab le to provide abundance or density estimates there is indirect evidence based on hunter off take (absence of large game) and interview responses ( reporting no or few encounters with large game) that the large mammal community has been reduced within this forest. This could be a signal of over


27 exploitation and a sign that the forests are disturbed Fa et al. (2005) also found that medium to large bodied species with slow reproductive rates are particularly vulnerable to over exploitation. Peres (2000) showe d that large bodied species rapidly decline with increased hunter presence and Dupain et al (2012) observed that the strongest signal of over hunting in an area is the decline in average body mass of prey. When large game were encountered and/or harvested and this was minimally, it was not restricted to the catchment area furthest from the village and closest to the National Park. This could indicate that the National Park serves as a source and that large game are persisting albeit in very low numbers throughout the community forest. Optimal foraging and cen tral place foraging theory predict ed that hunters would only travel as far as needed to encounter game species. Redford and Robinson (1987) noted that hunters would harvest whatever game they encoun tered, within their range of acceptable species. Hunter preferences can shift over time as species abundances change (Kumpel 2006). Our findings suggest that hunters avoid ed traveling farther than they had to as long as game was encountered. These results support Van Vliet (2010) who suggested that a source sink (a theoretical model that describes how habitat quality might affect population growths or declines) system is needed to maintain sustainable hunting and that hunter decisions were not based solely on prey abundance but also on external factors such as season, travel distance, and agricultural duties When examining which factors were the strongest predictor s determining selling price my results indicate that species body size is an important fac tor. Hunters will request a higher price for larger game. Macdonald et al (2011) found that price in


28 Nigeria and Cameroon was principally related to biomass and found little evidence that taxonomic group affected price. Consumer preference has some effect on selling price with preferred species being sold for more money but this effect was overshadowed by sample size (biomass) of the prey. Vath and Monroe ( Chapter 4) and Vath and Goldman (Chapter 3 ) found that 65% of community members and 47% of hunters c onsidered brush tailed porcupine to be the most delicious meat and it is one of the most common species in this forest. These results match those of Koster et al (2010) who found that there is a causal relationship between familiarity and taste preferenc es in Nicaragua n villages. When only abundant species were considered species harvested at greater distances were being sold for a higher price, a likely reflection of the greater effort involved in harvesting at great distances from the home village. Thi s suggests that hunters do take into account their travel effort when determining selling species and this falls in line with human forager prey models. Levi et al (2011) found that when game sp ecies b e came lo cally depleted hunters walked greater distanc es to see k out the same prey or they accept ed a wider of variety of prey which might be of lower value to the hunter. The changing economics of hunting will become a critical factor in conservation if species are slowly cleared out of the forest. Hunters will have to travel farther for the same game species but due to local economic limitations community members will most likely be unable to pay higher prices for game. Currently, a community member can afford to purchas e a high priced blue duiker caught b y a hunter in the interior bec ause they usually buy the low priced animal caught in the middle or edge catchment area. As


29 the forests become emptied and hunters must travel greater distances to capture animals an ecological and economic crash could occur in this system. We found that rarity and high levels of risk did not result in hunters attaching a higher selling price to species with those characteristics. The finding that illegal species did not sell for higher amounts of money lends support to the idea that there is little risk (punishment) for harvesting illegal species and that all species are considered to have no legal risk associated with them. Vath and Mon r o e (Chapter 4 ) found that 90% of community members stated that they would not report individuals who parti cipated in the harvesting, selling, or purchasing of illegal species and 55% felt that entering the Core area was a worse crime than shooting a monkey. CERCOPAN patrol only had three instances of hunters being caught with illegal species. Of the three onl y one was Returning to my original research questions I found that hunter self reported off take is more reliable than the patrol data when obtaining information on primate harvest and species composition did vary with larger species being harvested farther from the village and agricultural lands. Optimal foraging theory predictions match my findings with hunters charging more for species harvested at greater distances from the village and hunters taking large r prey far from the village Hunters do not target species with a higher selling price, instead they harvest whatever species they happen to encounter. Species size and consumer preference were the factors that contributed significantly to hunters selectio n of a selling price. Based on our findings I suggest that development of management policies and programs based on sustainable use should encourage hunter engagement in


30 developing local hunting regulations for species based on hunter perceptions of ab undance and consumer demand. Additionally, alternative protein livelihood projects geared towards hunter income generation should be considered. Vath and Goldman (in prep) and Wright and Preston (2010) found that income generation was the main motivating f actor that caused people to hunt as their primary livelihood. Rather than focusing on domestic species (pigs, goats, and chickens) the use of large rodents (pouched rats, cane rats, and porcupines) is recommended because of the cultural desire to consume forest meats and consumer taste preference for rodent species. These programs therefore, could decrease hunting pressure on wild game and allow for species to increase their populations. Two results did not conform with my predictions based on optimal fo raging theory. Few hunters travel ed to the forest interior to extract game and that when they did harvest from the interior they were not exclusively harvesting larger vertebrate species. The fact that consumers preferred abundant species highlights the n eed to work toward ensuring that these species remain abundant. Our results reveal that hunter s will only travel as far as necessary to ensure that they capture game and that they select species based on opportunistic encounters rather than selecting speci es with potential high economic value. In order to develop practical management plans the NGO must account for the fact that hunters are practicing opportunistic rather than selective hunting This hunting strategy is difficult to manage and change as long as the prey abundances remain low. Potential plans could include the breeding and release of near the national park boundary. The goal long term sustainability of the rural bushmeat


31 trade in this area has many challenges but it cannot be reached without the help and support of the hunters Figure 2 1. Map of Iko Community Forest with shed locations


32 Figure 2 2 The proportion of self reported animal off take (n=289) by volunteer hunters (n=3) resulting from 54 hunting trips equaling 189 days in the forest and proportion of carcasses (n=279) encountered during hunting shed censuses (n=22; 78 days in forest) conducted by patrol in the Iko Community Forest (210km 2 ) in C ross River State, Nigeria for 7 taxonomic groups during April October 2011. 0.0% 10.0% 20.0% 30.0% 40.0% 50.0% 60.0% Percent of Off take (%) Species Group Hunters Patrol


33 Figure 2 3. Least square (LS) means of selling price (USD) for selected species (a) S pecies are organized by increasing biomass and price is whole sale; and (b) species are organized by increasing consumer preference S elling price is per kg.


34 Figure 2 4. Least square (LS) mean of selling price (USD) for catchment areas with whole sale and price/kg. 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 2.5 3 3.5 4 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 Edge Middle Interior Price/kg LS Means Price LS Means Catchment Area Price Price/kg


35 CHAPTER 3 HUNTER PROFILES AND STRATEGIES For many rural people living in African moist forests, bushmeat is the main source of protein and a viable economic livelihood. The rapidly increasing human populations and shrinking forests in these areas often result in over hunting of the wildlife and accelerated pressures on non timber forest resources. Sustaining faunal populations is therefore critical for the livelihoods and health of local people. Hunters are important stakeholders in conservation and development because they de facto manage wildlife populations and provide mu ch needed protein to their communities. There is a growing body of literature that addresses the issues of game removal ( Martin 1983; Anadu et al. 1988; Van Vliet & Nasi 2008; Wright & Priston 2010), hunting sustainability (Fa et al 2006; Kumpel 2006; Br ugiere & Magassouba 2009; Kumpel et al. 2010), and natural resource management (Nielsen 2006; Robinson & Lokina 2011; Nielsen & Tre ue 2012; Macdonald et al. 2012 ) in Africa. Within Nigeria Martin (1983) argued that the high market demand for bushmeat requ ires game cropping for sustainability and Anadu et al (1988) found little regard for existing laws which resulted in large mammals being rare and smaller ones facing severe pressure s Fa et al (2006) argued the need to enforce protected areas and sustainable u se of species targeted for the bushmeat trade in Nigeria and Cameroon. Macdonald et al (2012) suggested the use of incentives and disincentives that target vulnerable species and regulati on of hunting methods. These studies attempt to tease out the social and ecological complexities associated with hunting and biodiversity conservation. The incorporation of local knowledge from those who earn their livelihoods from natural environments ha s long been recognized as providing far reaching insights into


36 ecological processes (Brook & McLachlan 2008). The documentation of local knowledge can not only provide valuable information, but also create a platform to build trust between conservation and development organizations, especially if the local language is used. Research Questions The aim of this study was to examine hunter behavior and the rural bushmeat trade among three communities in Cross River State Nigeria Understanding dependence of hunters on wildlife as a livelihood, learning hunters perceived abundance estimates for game species, and studying their hunting techniques can be used to inform management decisions related to biodiversity conservation. I used hunter interviews to dete game species. I ask ed the following questions : 1. Do hunters consider some sheds better than other sheds and why? 2. Does hunter specialization differ among the three communities and why? 3. Does selling price differ between the highway and in each of the villages? Hunting sheds could be an indicator of species abundance if the hunters use this a s a basis for why a shed is considered good or bad If a single and consistent response is give good or bad indicator of species abundance. Potential responses for if a shed is cons idered good could be: animals are plentiful, it is located near a good water source, the shed is cl ean, and the shed is close to the village or farm. Examples of responses for sheds considered bad could be: no animals present, too many hunters use the shed, the shed is dirty, no good water source, and the shed is too f ar away.


37 If hunter species spec ialization differs among the three communities it could be an indication that species abundance in a particular forest is high or low. Urban markets often have higher selling prices which might encourage hunters to participate in the urban trade and in thi s area selling bushmeat along the highway is comparable to the urban trade. Differences between communities could indicate varying degrees of rural urbanization, species abundances within forests, and market demand. Considering all three questions can prov ide insight into species abundance levels within these forests. Methods Study Area The communities of Agoi Ibami, Iko Esai, and Owai have varying population sizes, management strategies and degrees of dependence on the forest (Table 3 1). Hunting is done exclusively by males and many are driven into this livelihood if they become a head of household at a young age due to the death or absence of their father. Hunters are often considered to be uneducated (a result of dropping out of school to support their family) but very brave for entering into the forest for days at a time and staying over night. There are many local traditional beliefs associated with the dangers (e.g. forest spirits, dangerous animals, and the natural elements) of the forest and these m en are revered for facing those dangers. In Cross River State, forest reserves and community forests fall under the jurisdiction of the State Government Forestry Commission and state forestry law. The Iko Community Forest (210 km 2 ) and the Agoi Forest Rese rve (44 km 2 ) are located on the western flank of the Oban division (3,000 km 2 ) of Cross River National Park (Figure


38 3.1 ). Iko Esai and Owai share the Iko Community Forest and Agoi Ibami uses the Agoi Forest Reserve. Sampling Design At the time of the study (March to November 2011) there were 80, 85, and 65 hunters in the Agoi Ibami, Iko Esai, and Owai hunters group s respectively. Permission ach village and from the Chief H unter in each group. At a group meeting with the leaders of each hunting group the researcher explained the stud y objectives and was provided with names of group members who would be willing to be interviewed. One hunter in Agoi Ibamai, four hunters in Iko Esai, and 2 hunters in Owai declined to participate in the study. The number of respondents equaled 79 for Agoi Ibami, 81 for Iko Esai, and 63 for Owai. Hunters were interviewed wherever they were encountered, typically at their home. The informants had the op tion of answering questions in English or their native language (Iko or Agoi). A research assistant who was fluent in the local language and English was present to interpret as needed. Interviews Information concerning hunting practices and strategies wa s obtained through informal conversations and semi structured interviews. Combining these methods allowed the inclusion of personal narratives, attitudes, and statements, but also allowed these to be understood in context of actual practices Interview que stions were used to obtain data on commonly targeted species, estimated prices of traded wildlife (village and highway), weapons used for hunting, reasons for hunting, seasonality of hunting, and preferred hunting locations within the forest. Two questions that assessed levels of pro environment behaviors were also included in the interviews.


39 Informal conversations occur red after the interviews when participants were allowed to ask the researcher any questions or to share additional opinions. The questions and comments revolved around hunter s ideas about animal biology and possibility of animal extinctions. In order to determine perceived abundances of species hunters were asked to terms were used to identify if species were abundant or rare. Local names of animals were used and a field guide with pictures was produced in cases of confusion or clarification. To assess the presence of large vertebrate species hunters were asked to ide ntify which hunting shed the researcher should visit if they wanted to see elephant, chimpanzee, red capped mangabeys and drill. Estimated whole sale selling price was given for highway and village price for each species. Hunters were also asked if any of the species were kept for self consumption only. The interview was designed and pilot tested with CERCOPAN staff who were ex hunters from all three communities and with hunters from the neighboring village of Iko Ekperem, which was not included in the stu dy. Analysis Chi square tests and ANOVA were used to test the differences in hunting practices and selling prices between the three communities. Animals identified by the were coded as 2.


40 Results Hunting Patterns I had a response rate of 97% and a lack of non response bias because I have a nearly complete population. Hunters who participated in this study reported hunting as their primary occupation a nd form of income. Hun ters spent an average of four days in the forest each week (usually Monday through Thursday returning on their market day). Hunters were active all year but 64% preferred to hunt in the dry season Respondents stated the lack of rain as the main reason fo r preferring the dry season. Those that preferred the wet season mentioned a lack of dry leaves and that animals moved more freely through the forest. A minority of hunters (23%) reported not entering the forest during the full moon because animals could see them While in the forest they slept hunt ed and process ed (butcher ed and dried ) the harvest at d esignated hunting sheds (Fig. 3 2 ). Most of the sheds had been in their current location for over 20 years and the hunters work ed communally to maintain them. When hunters were asked what sheds they considered to be the best and worst they reported sheds with high perceived gam e abundance as the worst Bushmeat was not sold openly in the market; instead buyers ca me to the hunters home s t o purchase the prepared meat. When bushmeat was for sale in the market it was sold by size pieces that have been cooked and seasoned. In s ome instances consumers request ed certain species and/or request fresh meat (a butchered but un smoked animal) and hunters attempt ed to fulfill that customer s order.


41 A minorit y of hunters (38%) reported having a species specialization. Duikers, brush tai led porcupine and monkeys were the three species most frequently mentioned by hunters as a species on which they specialized Hunters who specialized in duikers reported having the ability to make duiker vocalizations to attract the animals. Hunter s will h ide behind a large tree and make a duiker vocal call for up to three minutes. This usually brings a nearby male duiker into the hunter s range. This technique was usually practiced during the day but also at night. Those who specialized in monkeys reported hunting prim arily during the day and/or using dogs if the y specialized in hunting d rill ( Mandrillus leucophaeus ). Two to three dogs were used to surround the drill troop and the hunter attempt ed to kill as many of the drills (usually using a machete inst ead of a gun) before they fled Many hunters noted that d rill stay and fight which worked to their advantage. Those focusing on arboreal monkeys would listen for their feeding vocalizations and track them. Hunters from Owai village specialize more than hunters from the other two villages ( x 2 = 12.03, p = 0.002). There were four main hunting techniques used : gun, wire snares, dogs, and a combination of these methods (Fig. 3 3 ). Only 29 % of Agoi Ibami, 19% of Owai and <1% of Iko Esai hunter use wire snar es. The average number of traps set was 290 and there was no significant difference between Owai and Agoi Ibami ( t = 1.19, df = 13, p = 0.12) ; most hunters check ed and re set traps every 2 3 days. Traps were placed almost exclusively during the wet season (J une Sep tember) when agricultural work wa s low. Perceived Abundance Blue duiker, bay duiker, brush tailed porcupine, and putty nose monkey were considered to be the most common species in the forest (Table 3 2 ) and sixteen out of the twenty four species dis cussed were considered rare including : chimpanzee, red


42 capped mangabey, B The remaining eight species were considered neither abundant nor rare. Estimated abundances of marsh cane rat, yellow backed duiker and African buffalo were significantly different among the three communities with Agoi hunters reporting higher perceived abundance estimates than Esai and Owai Owai hunters had the highest perceived abundance estimate s for g enet and crocodile followed by Esai and Agoi. Chimpanzee and red capped mangabey had the highest proportion of hunters reporting that they had never seen these species (Fig. 3 4 ). easy to detect by their vocalizations (this was exclusively used to describe primates). There were no significant differences between why animals were considered easy to kill among the hunters in all three villages 2 =7.04, p = 0.133) D uikers and rodents were considered the easiest animals to hunt due to their high abundance and primates were considered easy to hunt because hunters could hone in on their vocalizations. 2 =103.4, df=14, p = <0.001) in the fav ored meat for taste with Agoi Ibami hunters preferring blue duiker, Iko Esai hunters preferring brush tailed porcupine and Owai hunters preferring the endangered pangolin. A majority of Agoi Ibami hunters (85%) and 77% of Iko Esai and 68% of Owai hunters said that they would continue to harvest a species that they knew was s perceptions about animal extinctions and animal The most common a ill not let that happen Other s mentioned their belief that every time they killed an animal another was born somewhere else in the


43 they agreed t here are fewer animals but not due to lower abundances just that the The biggest misconception hunters had about animal biology was related to reproduction. Hunters believed that all adult females gave bi rth to young every year and were unaware of the inter birth intervals of various species They understood that some animals had multiple births like the brush tailed porcupine and red river hog and others like the putty nosed monkey and bay duiker had sin gle births. Economic Livelihoods The majority of hunters (95%) interviewed were involved in the rur al commercial trade of bushmeat; with less than 1% reporting that they sold meat on the highway. All of the hunters permanently lived in their respective vi llage and would hunt for subsistence purposes, either self consumption or to earn cash for primarily expenses. If they had to pick between hunting for self consumption or income 100% said they would hunt for profit over self consumption because hunting was their primary livelihood and alternative employment opportunities were scarce. For snare and gun hunters, cable and cartridge supplies do not appear to be a limiting factor be cause they are available in all the villages. The average price is $5US for wire and $1US per cartridge (Table 3 3 ). The general trend was that meat sold on the highway had a higher estimated price than meat sold within the village (Table 3 4 ). Meat sold i n Agoi was the most expensive followed by Esai and then Owai with the exceptions of brush tailed porcupine and blue duiker (Table 3 5 ). Drill had the same estimated price in each village. Over 50% of Owai hunters felt comfortable providing estimates for hi ghway selling prices but


44 less than 1% from Agoi and Esai could provide estimates This lend s further support to the hunter s claim that they only participate in the rural trade. Discussion Impacts of Hunting on Species A bundance Four lines of evidence supp ort the idea that hunting in this region is occurring at unsustainable levels: (1) There was a l ack of hunter specialization ( 2 ) The m ajority of hunting locations were considered poor ( 3 ) 67% of species were perceived to be rare by hunters and ( 4 ) specie s considered easiest to kill were considered easy because they were the most abundant. An additional indicator of over harvest is that hunter s favorite meats to consume in two of the villages are the most locally abundant species. In the following discuss ion I approach each of these conclusions separately. The overall lack of hunter specialization could indicate that hunters are generalists willing to pursue any species that is encountered. Levi et al. (2011) found that when game species were locally deple ted hunters will begin to accept a wider variety of prey, some of which might be of lower value. Those hunters who did specialize were focused primarily on duikers, and to a lesser extent brush tailed porcupine and monkeys, rather than large high value game such as elephants, buffalo, and chimpanzee. Hunting sheds were semi perman ent structures that hunters had built within the forest. Locations for shed construction were based on either access to water or previous success. There had not been any new sh eds constructed in the last 5 years and most sites were selected over 30 years ago (personal communication). If shed locations historically took into account game abundance and were placed where game was high the fact that over 48 % of the sheds in the two forests were considered poor due to a


45 lack of game is a likely indicator of local species depletion. The few areas that continue d to have wildlife were under extre me hunting pressures as evident from the complaint that some sheds were bad because there we re perceived abundance responses indicate that they consider ed 16 out of the 24 large vertebrate species included in the study to be rare. Species that were perceived to be abundant included small ungulates (blue and ba y duiker), the brush tailed porcupine drill and the putty nosed monkey. The perceived abundance of ungulates and rodents matches other studies that found some of these species to have high abundance in Afric an moist forests (Fa and Purvis 1997; Fa et al 2006; MacDonald et al 2011). However, the perception that the highly endangered drill is abundant is of particular concern. If hunters believe that this species is highly abundant they might show resistance to refrain from hunting this species. There is a lso a chance that conservationists pushing the idea that these species are rare when hunter s believe the opposite could lead to mistrust b etween the two groups. Hunter s also have the misconception that the local NGO wants to prevent them from hunting all s pecies and any additional conflicts or misunderstandings could prevent open dialogue and the success of conservation goals. The number of large game perceived as rare could serve as a signal that over hunting is occurring (Fa et al 2006; Dupain et al 201 2). The the chimpanzee and red capped mangabey matches their perceived abundance scores. Hunters selection of blue duiker and brush kill rates and supports the ir perceived abundance estimates. Koster et al (2010) found a


46 causal relationship between familiarity and bush meat preferences. In our study h unters selected those two species as the most delicious meat and Vath & Monroe ( Chapter 4 ) found that community members selected brush tailed porcupine as their favorite meat. Significance o f Hunting and Trade for L ivelihoods The rural trade of bushmeat was the primary source of income for the hunters in this study. Although meat could be sold for higher prices along the highway it was not a large enough increase in profit to lure hunters into the urban trade especially given the extra time involved in selling the meat along highways The fact that less than 1% of hunters reported participating in the urban trade is likely due to poor road conditions and the dista nce that would need to be traveled; isolation ha s therefore kept trade local. There are differences in trade between the three communities with Agoi hunters charging more than those in Esai and Owai. The higher prices in Agoi could indicate that bushmeat is less abundant in that forest and therefore more expensive. Per sonal observation of domestic meats being sold more commonly in Agoi Ibami than Iko Esai or Owai might also account for a higher price of bushmeat similar to urban centers where Clarke (2003) noted that purchasing of bushmeat in cities is used to demonstra te newly acquired wealth. The cost of hunting as a livelihood also differs with Agoi hunters paying less for their guns and cartridges but more for wire snares. This discrepancy in hunting tool cost might reflect the different supply demands in the communi ties. The fact that hunters in Iko Esai and Owai, who share the Iko Community Forest, reported using a gun, which is a selective hunting technique, could indicate higher species abundances. Agoi hunters had a higher percent age reporting the use of snares which is a non selective method that requires less daily effort for the hunter. It might be reasonable to assume that as


47 game numbers decrease hunters switch to methods that will increase their harvest rates. Conclusions Hunters have an intimate knowledge of their environment due to their experience with and dependence on forest resources for their livelihoods. Although I do not have data on abundances of wildlife, my results indicate that species are in the process o f becoming locally extinct. These extinc tions will have ecological and economic consequences. Ecologically the loss of primates that serve as seed dispersers and large game (elephants, buffalo, and sitatunga) that are ecosystem engineers will a ffect forest structure and succession. Vath et al (Chapter 2 ) found that hunters selling price was influenced by species biomass Because the most abundant species all weigh less than 10kg income generation was minimal. T o compensate for this lack of large game, hunters must harvest more individuals whi ch could put an even greater strain on a delicate system. Community members will also be affected economically because hunters charge more for species harvested at a greater distan ce from the village ( Chapter 2 ). This will mean that hunters will have to ch arge less money for species that required greater hunting effort in order for community members to be able to afford bushmeat. Understanding hunter s strategies and economi c trends in rural settings can be a useful tool when developing conservation plans and outreach To avoid an ecological and economic crisis in these forests hunters information should be incorporated into management plans. Hunter s perceived abundance estimates can be used to encourage hunters to practice auto regulation within their hunter groups. Hunters can determine which species are rare and enforce a range of restrictions from limits to the


48 more extreme measure of banning all harvest. By making hunter s feel like valued members of a conservation team and acknowledging their need f or economic survival rather than portraying them as the villain those who seek to conserve biodiversity might have more success. biology it is suggested that they be incorporated into monitoring programs. Engaging hunters in camera/filming projects that document the basic biology of wildlife can allow them to see first hand the limits to births, survival, etc. Training hunters to participate in transect and species counts might al so demonstrate the low abundance of species present in the forest. Due to hunters belief that drill monkeys are abundant a stricter protection program should be implemented to ensure that drills are not hunted to extinction The protection program could include the development of a second core area closer to the national park boundary based on the home ranges of the surviving drill troops and increased enforcement and fines when individuals illegally harvest this species. It will be important to educate the hunters that the exclusion of drills will not damage their livelihood survival because th e drill is a mi nimal part of their overall harvest. Reminding hunters that hunting, buying, and or selling primate s is illegal under Nigerian law makes it seem as if CERCOPAN is merely supporting and enforcing the law Th e conservation measures suggested above focus on a case by case scenario and include fortress and community based conservation rather than advocating one approach or the other Empowering hunters to see themselves as integral parts of the ecosystem should help them see their personal survival and that of their children


49 depends on their actions and the actions of their hunter community. Saving highly endangered species such as the Drill, however, may require more direct conservation measures such as protecting areas know n to be used frequently by this species.


50 Figure 3 1. Agoi Forest Reserve (44km 2 ) and Iko Community Forest (210km 2 ) with the three communities in the study Agoi Ibami, Iko Esai, and Owai and the Oban division(3,000km 2 ) of the Cross River State, National Park


51 Table 3 1. Description of three communities in Cross River State, Nigeria Agoi Ibami Iko Esai Owai Ethnic group Agoi Clan Iko Clan Iko Clan Language Agoi Iko Iko Estimated adult population size 4,400 1,500 800 Estimated total population 9,000 4,600 2,000 Village Area 63 hectares 20 hectares 13 hectares Total hunter group membership 80 85 65 Total hunters interviewed 79 81 63 Level of forest dependence Moderate High Very High Forest management plan Government (forest reserve) Community (multiple use model) Community (multiple use model) Total forest area 44km 2 210km 2 210km 2 Hunting catchment area 44km 2 206km 2 206km 2 Figure 3 2 Image of hunting shed in the Iko Community forest(left) and close up of carcasses being smoked in the shed (right).


52 Figure 3 3 Reported hunting strategy employed by hunters in the three communities


53 Table 3 2 Perceived abundance of selected wildlife species (1= rare; 3 = abundant) Common Name Local name (Agoi) Local name (Iko) Average body weight (kg) a Perceived abundance score b f p value Primates Agoi Esai Owai Combined Chimpanzee Iyimantin Idubatam 32 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0 0 0 Drill Iwom Iyum 15 2.8 2.5 2.8 2.8 8.02 <0.001 Red capped mangabey Ewokpor Ekpo 8.1 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0 0 0 Putty nose monkey Ewokbura Ubuna 5.4 3.0 3.0 3.0 3.0 0 0 Red eared monkey N/A Iona 3.4 1.9 1.6 1.8 1.8 7.64 <0.001 Mona monkey Vabina Obem 4.5 2.8 2.4 2.7 2.7 6.34 <0.001 Rodents Brush tailed porcupine Ikuk Iyup 2.8 3.0 3.0 3.0 3.0 0 0 Marsh cane rat Abmbemi Ephip 6.6 2.7 2.0 2.0 2.3 186.2 <0.001 Ungulates Sitatunga Enok Idup 83.8 2.0 1.7 1.7 1.8 8.4 0.0003 Yellow backed duiker Arban Ajima 62.5 1.8 1.6 1.4 1.7 16.16 <0.001 Bay duiker Taman Ebin 19.5 2.9 3.0 2.9 3.0 0.78 0.45 Blue duiker Vituni Bituna 6.3 3.0 3.0 3.0 3.0 0 0 Water chevontaine Vikon Bejuy 10.9 1.5 1.6 1.6 1.6 1.09 0.33 African buffalo Etowa Ebonga 285 1.6 1.4 1.2 1.4 13.71 <0.001 Red river hog Isie Iyrre 80 2.9 2.7 2.7 2.8 3.34 0.03 Pangolins Tree pangoline/ Long tailed pangoline Takang Betek 2.6 1.0 1.1 1.1 1.1 0.74 0.4 Carnivores Common genet Inap Akokanta 1.8 1.1 1.6 1.7 1.5 54 <0.001 Golden cat Tawaiwai Ekbaiba 11.75 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0 0.53 0.58 Mongoose Viyok Epetam 4.75 1.9 1.8 1.8 1.9 4.16 0.01 Leopard Ekpe Ekpe 53.2 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0 0 0 African civet Juk Sup 15.5 1.8 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.82 0.16 Reptiles Crocodile Efin Etagaram n/a 1.1 1.2 1.5 1.3 16.7 <0.001 Bell's hinged tortoise Vikin Bejen 1.5 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0 2.7 0.06 Rock python Etang Akbuga n/a 1.0 1.1 1.1 1.1 5.34 0.005 a Average male and female weight rounded to nearest kg; from Kingdon (1997) b 1= rare; 3= abundant


54 Figure 3 4 Proportion of hunters (Agoi Ibami n = 79; IkoEsai n= 81; and Owai n = 63) (210km 2 ) and Agoi Forest Reserve (44km 2 ) in Cross River State, Nigeria Table 3 3 Cost (USD) of hunting equipment for the three communities Village Gun Snare Cartridge Light Agoi 44.8 5.2 1.3 4.0 Esai 54.5 2.3 1.5 5.7 Owai 72.3 4.2 1.4 3.7 f 20.11 17.05 9.99 3.96 df 214 34 215 180 p value <0.001 <0.001 <0.001 0.02 Average Combined Price 56.5 4.8 1.4 4.6 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 Elephant Chimpanzee Red-capped mangabey Drill Proportion of hunters reporting "never seen" (%) Species Agoi Ibami Iko Esai Owai


55 Table 3 4 Village selling price versus highway price Species Average body weight (kg) a Rural Price Urban Price Mean (SD) n b Mean (SD) n b df t p value Bay duiker 19.5 43.72 (17.86) 189 38.93 (7.86) 44 151 2.2 0.028 Blue duiker 6.3 17.20 (4.51) 190 19.33 (4.96) 45 62 2.9 0.005 Drill 15 38.91 (13.57) 157 46.69 (16.5) 44 60 2.9 0.005 Monkey c 4.4 18.13 (7.28) 150 14.99 (4.00) 41 119 3.6 0.0004 Marsh cane rat 6.6 16.34 (4.72) 152 17.92 (4.99) 35 49 1.7 0.09 Brush tailed porcupine 2.8 12.2 (3.34) 175 18.61 (7.83) 41 43 5.1 <0.001 Red river hog 80 133.86 (56.13) 173 94.92 (33.29) 44 113 5.9 <0.001 a Average male and female weight rounded to nearest kg; from Kingdon (1997) b n = number of hunters that felt comfortable estimating selling price c Includes Putty nose, red eared, and mona monkey Table 3 5 Comparison of estimated village selling price for selected species Species Average body weight (kg) a Agoi Ibami Rural Price Iko Esai Rural Price Owai Rural Price Mean (SD) n b Mean (SD) n b Mean (SD) nb df f p value Bay duiker 19.5 56.71 (20.93) 74 38.33 (8.46) 62 31.88 (6.11) 53 188 52.7 <0.001 Blue duiker 6.3 16.5 (3.23) 76 20.16 (5.22) 62 14.69 (3.10) 52 189 28.2 <0.001 Drill 15 39.5 (8.64) 71 39.9 (18.94) 42 37.27 (14.2) 44 156 0.46 0.62 Monkeyc 4.4 20.85 (6.31) 70 18.73 (8.01) 41 12.63 (4.78) 39 149 20.3 <0.001 Marsh cane rat 6.6 17.87 (62) 62 14.44 (6.11) 51 13.77 (3.63) 39 151 10.07 <0.001 Brush tailed porcupine 2.8 9.41 (1.73) 66 13.87 (3.04) 59 13.9 (2.82) 50 174 62.89 <0.001 Red river hog 80 171.98 (26.84) 74 132.32 (58.12) 54 73.03 (28.6) 45 172 86.9 <0.001 a Average male and female weight rounded to nearest kg; from Kingdon (1997) b n = number of hunters that felt comfortable estimating selling price c Includes Putty nose, red eared, and mona monkey


56 CHAPTER 4 NGO IMPACT ON SUPPORT FOR CONSERVATION For many rural people living in African moist forests, bushmeat is a major source of protein and income. The rapidly increasing human populations and shrinking forests in these areas often contribute to over hunting and accelerated pressures on non timber forest resources. These increasing pressures on the environment make preservation of forests and other natural areas and the wil dlife they support crucial for the persistence of biological diversity (McNeely 1994). In an effort to combat these trends, multiple strategies have been implemented for natural area protection. Historically, protected areas have been designated by governm ents and institutions in an effort to protect nature from local people (Hutton et al. including displacement of local residents, disregard for customary rights, and restrict ions or exclusion of resource use through policy and policing ( Gibson & Marks 1995 ; Jones 2006 ; Cernea & Schmidt Soltau 2006 ). This physical and economic displacement, as well as the accountability of international conservation non governmental organizatio ns (NGO) that contribute to it, concerns social scientists when debating the costs and benefits of conservation. Although policies surrounding conservation are supposed to be socially sound (reduction of poverty rather than maintaining or increasing curren t poverty levels) many argue that NGOs are not improving the quality of life for nearby popul ations (Cernea & Schmidt Soltau 2006). In response to these concerns, NGOs began to implement an inclusi ve rather than exclusi ve approach known as community bas ed conservation (CBC) as a means of recognizing the social impacts protected areas have on local residents (Adams &


57 Hutton 2007). CBC aims to give the resources back to the local people so they can own, control, manage and benefit from their natural reso urces and therefore combines development and conservation agendas. Development projects often center on economic incentives through livelihood projects to create sustainable practices. Livelihood projects can be divided into two groups: alternative protein s and dependence on hunting wildlife and create additional income by providing training in small scale domestic husbandry of chickens, goats, or pigs. Environmental sustainabil ity programs focus on education and training that reduces dependence on natural resources. Tree nurseries, low fuel stoves, and ecotourism are all examples of the topics and skills these training programs include. This inclusive approach has garnered support because it uses bottom up engagement rather than top down mandates. Participation is used as a tool to promote integration of protected areas with local stakeholders, minimizing existing conflicts and negative impacts on these biodiversity rich are as (Mannigel 2008). Various studies have shown that local people actively support CBC because it allows for ecotourism development in conservation areas and commu nity forestry (Methta & Kellert 1998). Success stories from East and South Africa include the Amboseli Community wildlife tourism project in Kenya and appears to be due to creating ownership and value of local wildlife (Child et al. 1997). Critics, however, believe that CBC programs do not offer adequ ate sustainable livelihood alternatives to local communities but merely try to reduce opposition to pr otected areas (Parry & Campbell 1992; Wells & Brandon 1992; Berkes 2004). It might


58 be fair to assume that if resources are only managed for their economic value, communities would base management decisions purely on financial gains rather than factoring in ecological or intrinsic benefits; this singular focus would likely have devastating impacts on conservation outcomes. Critics note that mixed programs often fail because conservation and development have differing objectives and goals and this can result in poor project implementation (Berkes 2004). In many cases the success of these programs has been dependent upon the attitudes and behaviors of local c ommunity members and their interaction with resource management officials ( Infield & Namara 2001 ; Boissiere et al. 2009; Htun et al. 2012 ). and beliefs (Fishbein & Ajzen 1975; Ajzen & Fishbein 1980), and local people toward their development and conservation projects. In order for NGOs to be successful it might be helpful to know the underlying (Berkes 2004; Torquebiau & Taylor 2009). This research was conducted in an area where CBC, alternative protein sources, livelihood projects, and environmental education programs have all been implemented in various degrees in three communities by a local NGO in an effort to promote primate and forest conservation and rural development. If NGOs want to improve the effectiveness of their programs by taking into account the needs of the community, then they must determ ine the following: (1) Is the information understood?, (2) Are alternative programs such as protein sources changing attitudes?, and (3) Do these programs actually result in preservation of habitats critical to biodiversity or do they just make


59 these habit ats unnecessary/expendable and therefore result an actual net loss of biodiversity? This study tests the basic hypothesis that participation with an NGO through outreach programs and livelihood projects increases support for conservation and improves pro e nvironmental behaviors. Methods Study Area Nigeria, the most populous country in Africa with 168 million people (World Bank 2013), has an impressive array of biodiversity nationwide that is threatened by high human population pressures. Even though the cou producer of oil, it remains one of the poorest countries on the planet. Approximately 65% of the population subsists on less than $1.25 a day and Nigeria ranks 156th out of 187 on the human development inde x (UNDP 2011). S uch levels of poverty and high Conservation International has identified Cross River State in Southeastern endangered plant and animal species are found only within the true evergreen forests of the Cross sanga Bioko region; including the recently described and highly endangered Cross River gorilla ( Gorilla gorilla diehli ) and drill ( Mandrillus leuco phaeus ). In Cross River State, forest reserves and community forests fall under the jurisdiction of the State Government Forestry Commission and state forestry law. The Iko Community Forest (CF) (210 km 2 ) and the Agoi Forest Reserve (AFR) (44 km 2 ) are loc ated on the western flank of the Oban division (3,000 km 2 ) of Cross River National


60 Park. Two nearby villages, Iko Esai and Owai share the CF and a third community, Agoi Ibami uses the AFR (Fig. 3 1). In 2001 with the help of a local environmental NGO, The Centre for Education, Research, and Conservation of Primates and Nature (CERCOPAN), the chiefs of Iko Esai and Owai agreed to implement a multiple use conservation design to the CF. A core area (4km 2 C osystem protection and primate conservation, a surrounding buffer zone ( 35km 2 ) known as the Timber Forest Products (NTFPs) and hunting, and a transition zone (171km 2 ) loca ted greater impact, specifically timber extraction. The other forest, AFR, is managed by a government agency; however, there was no active management or enforcement presen ce during the study. AFR does not follow a multiple use design and community members are allowed to perform any activity throughout the entire forest. It is illegal to buy, sell, or kill primates and endangered species anywhere in Nigeria under decree 11, 1985 (CERCOPAN 2011). Communities Three communities, Agoi Ibami, Iko Esai, and Owai, were included in this study based on their varying degrees of contact with CERCOPAN and dependence on the forest ( Fig. 4 1 and Table 4 1). Farming and the collection of livelihoods in each community. Farmers practice slash and burn agriculture and rely on forest re growth to replenish the fertility of exhausted soils. The main crops grown in this area are yam, cassava, plantain, cocoyam, and cocoa. The main non timber forest products are bush mango, wild salad (afang), rattans and chewing sticks (randia). Small


61 scale trade and employment in the civil service (local government staff, teachers and health workers) provide employment for some in the vill ages. Hunting and public transport (motorcycle taxis) also form an important contribution to the local economy. Poorer households in the communities rely on NTFPs for up to 70 % of household income (CERCOPAN 2011). Agoi Ibami is the largest community both i n area and population size (Table 4 1) with a distinct language and culture. It is considered to have moderate rural development within this context because it has a number of stores and skilled labor services (e.g., mechanics, tilers, etc.), a single unpa ved road (passable by car) that leads to the neighboring community of Ugep (30km northwest with an estimated population over 200,000), unfinished national electricity supply, and numerous culverts and bridges. Iko Esai is considered to have a low rural dev elopment rating with poor road infrastructure, no electricity, and a single borehole. Owai is considered very low in development due to the additional factors of low sanitation and no secondary school. Access to domestic meats also differs between the thr ee communities; Agoi Ibami has beef and pork available occasionally on market days. Beef and pork are rarely available in Iko Esai and Owai was never observed to have beef or pork options on market days during this study. Local Non Governmental Organizatio n: CERCOPAN The Centre for Education, Research, and Conservation of Primates and Nature was founded in 1995 and is one of the leading environmental non profit, non to conse partnerships, education, primate rehabilitation and research. To this end, they conduct


62 environmental education programs targeting urban and rural populations, strive to protect and preserve the remaining community forests through community engagement, conduct research focused in the natural and social sciences, implement community development projects, and actively practice primate rehabilitation. Iko Esai was selected as the org interest of village council to pursue community development through conservation and tourism, and location and condition of the community forest. As partners in conservation, Iko established a land use management plan within the community forest. CERCOPAN agreed to assist in developing sustainable alternative livelihoods, creating employment opportunities for local community members, ra ising awareness of conservation and environmental issues in the community through environmental education programs, and supporting the community in their efforts to combat illegal logging. In 2009 CERCOPAN began working with the other nearby communities wh o signed community conservation by laws in July and October of 2011. The by laws include agreements to manage the forests sustainably, including banning the hunting of primates, no poisoning of streams, leaving a 50 m buffer between the forest edge and far mlands, and not allowing commercial logging. hunter's groups, youth groups, and council members in each community. The education and outreach programs provide information about the local w ildlife and their role in the forest ecosystem, the benefits of having a healthy forest, the consequences of unsustainable practices and local hunting laws. The number of programs and outreach


63 activities implemented each year depends upon funding. During t his study the organization had been in the midst of a financial crisis that began in late 2009, due to financial constraints adult programs were conducted at least once in each community. Livelihood projects that focus on trade training (bread making, sewi ng, taxi driving and bee keeping) have been implemented in Iko Esai since 2006 with varying degrees of success. In 2010, CERCOPAN started to implement alternative protein livelihood projects. These focused on pig farming and egg production in Iko Esai and Iko Esai and fourteen in Agoi Ibami were given three chickens each for egg producti on. Participants were selected based on requirements given by donors (such as elderly or widowed) and attendance at a participant selection meeting that was open to all require ments and any open positions were filled by interested community members. This resulted in participants having diverse sociodemographic backgrounds. The prospect of earning additional income through egg production and pig farming was the primary reason giv en by participants for joining the project (CERCOPAN 2011). Owai did not have any active livelihood projects prior to this study. To increase local employment, CERCOPAN hired and trained 22 staff members on and agreement with Iko Esai, as their host community, the majority of the staff is from Iko Esai (19, with 2 from Agoi Ibami, and 1 from Owai).


64 Nigerian staff works onsite to coordinate research and manage programs. Formal interacti on with community members ranges from visits to Iko Esai to attend chief council meetings and conduct outreach programs. Informal interactions occur whenever community members are encountered by non Nigerian staff, usually in the form of conversations as p eople enter the forest through camp, with individuals on their farms, and when walking through the community. During the study only the community conservation manager, who focused on livelihood programs, and the Rhoko manager were on site. Data Collection Subject Selection. The pig farming and egg production alternative protein livelihood project participants were selected for this study because these two programs were implemented in Iko Esai and Agoi Ibami one year before the research took place, they had high levels of contact with CERCOPAN staff, and the possibility of changing attitudes with participation in these projects was considered high. Nigerian community members who are employed by CERCOPAN were added to the Projec t Participant category (Table 4 1) because of their high degree of contact with the NGO and employment by the NGO serves as an alternative livelihood. A list of the livelihood participants was acquired from CERCOPAN and permission to conduct the research uncil in each village. All livelihood participants agreed to participate in the study. To select participants from the general population a sketch map of each village was created using staff members from each community. Attention to neighborhoods and roads randomly selected using a roll of a die for survey work during each community visit.


65 Once a neighborhood was selected the interviewer and assistant went to each compound within that neighborhood in search of people to interview. At the end of a survey day that neighborhood was excluded from a second visit until all neighborhoods had been surveyed. After each neighborhood had been surveyed all neighborhoods were considered eligible an d the selection process was repeated. In the case that two adults were present in the home each adult picked a number (1 6) and the die was people approached to participate i n the study agreed to be interviewed. Community surveys were conducted on market days and on Sunday, when people were more likely to be home. Questionnaire Development. The questionnaire was administered to adults (n= 514) in three communities in March Oc tober 2011. The survey used fixed response questions (yes/no and scale) with fifteen open ended questions designed to gain in depth understanding of key concepts. The survey was divided into nine sections: 1) knowledge of hunting laws, 2) relationship with CERCOPAN, 3) support of the community forest, 4) support for sustainable consumption of forest resources, 5) conservation attitudes, 6) involvement with the livelihood projects, 7) household profile, 8) behaviors, and 9) perceptions of enforcement of comm unity forest and state laws. The survey was designed and pilot tested with community members. The survey was conducted in one of three languages; English, Iko, or Agoi by the researcher with the help of a local assistant who was fluent in the vernacular of the language and English. Respondents were asked to select the language they preferred. Responses to the survey were written in English. Local words were used and technical jargon was


66 g and Law (2000) was used to increase the reliability of the survey. Illegal resource collection is very difficult to measure accurately (Infield & Namara, 2001; Moorman, 2006) When pilot testing I found that most community members were willing to disclose illegal behavior. However, I included a balanced question format when asking about illegal behaviors, by preempting the question with a statement that some people do the sensitive behavior of interest, others do not (Weisberg et al 1996) Analysis Questionnaire data were analyzed using chi squared, single factor ANOVA, principal component analysis, correspondence analysis, and t tests in SAS JMP 10 software (2013). A 5 point Likert scale with anchor points of 1= strongly disagree and 5 = strongly ag ree was used to gage support for conservation, pro environmental behaviors, and relationship attitudes with CERCOPAN. The lower end of the scale indicates weak support for conservation, negative pro environmental behaviors, and a weak relationship with CE RCOPAN and higher figures indicate more support, positive behaviors and strong relationship attitudes. A conservation ethic score was a combination of the support of the community forest, support for sustainable consumption of forest resources, conservatio n attitudes, and behavior score. The fifteen items were reverse worded during the design phase of the survey to prevent response bias. An eight question knowledge test was created with yes/no/unsure responses. A scale was created with correct answers recei 8 possible points.


67 Results Rural occupations and wealth. In Agoi Ibami 24% of respondents listed Iko Esai and Owai where f 2 =69.0, p= <0.001) and among the three com 2 =26.87, p= <0.001) (Table 4 2). When comparing 2 =23.32, p=0.003), goat 2 2 =20.15, p=<0.0001) ownership. There were no significant differences between project participants and general population for farm size 2 2 2 =0.12, p=0.73) ownership. Owai had the highest percent of individuals with more than 5 goats, the second highest percent of individ uals that own transport, and the smallest farm size (Table 4 2). Goat ownership and transport are likely influenced by their remoteness and farm size by their percentage of i ndividuals owning transport and more than 5 goats could reflect the the continuous forest and surrounded by anthropogenic disturbance which could account for their larger farm centage of goat and transport ownership could reflect their access to hired transport and ability to purchase goats from outside vendors. Their large farm size is likely due to the current land use changes that are allowing for agricultural expansion along the edge of the community forest. Livelihood program success. Success was measured by income generated by selling eggs or pig meat and willingness to participate in another livelihood program


68 (satisfaction). Only the Iko Esai pig group and four of the 14 egg production participants in Agoi Ibami were able to generate income. Failure to generate income resulted from animal management problems including: not providing enough fresh water and feed to pigs, not reporting sick animals in order to receive free me dical attention, failure to construct chicken coops, and failure to provide appropriate feed to chickens. The income generated was not considered to be significant by those who profited. However, they did report that this was money that they would not have acquired without being part of the project. Does contact with a NGO increase knowledge of hunting laws? Project participants had a higher mean score (5.10 SD=1.5) than the general population (4.85 SD=1.6) but no significant difference in overall score ( t = 1.15 df= 70, p = 0.12). Analyzing each knowledge question separately suggests that project participants were 2 =5.23, p=0.02) and believe that individuals have restrictions on which species they are allowed to shoot on their 2 =6.93, p=0.008). At the community level there were significant differences ( f = 183.8, df =2, p = < 0.001) in overall knowledge scores with Iko Esai having highest mean knowledge score 6.03 (SD=1.13) followed by Owai (4 .46, SD=1.41) and then Agoi Ibami (3.74, SD=1.19) (Table 4 2) and significant differences on each individual question. A majority (66%) of the project participants and 75% of the general population understood that there were restrictions on hunting certain animals within the forest but only 31% and 16%, respectively, understood that these same restrictions applied to their farms. These results indicate that participation with a livelihood project does not e community level degree of contact


69 with CERCOPAN or other environmental staff (Table 4.1) does increase community Does contact with a NGO influence support for conservation and conservation attitudes? Project participa nts showed more support for resource conservation and using a multiple use management plan. Individuals in both (project and general population) groups reported having a positive relationship with CERCOPAN. Each community showed strong support and positive attitudes for several individual items in this scale of eleven items. Iko Esai had the strongest support for resource conservation and using a multiple use management plan followed by Owai and then Agoi Ibami. Iko Esai had a more positive relationship wit h the NGO than Agoi Ibami ( t =10.25, df= 367, p = <0.001) (Table 4 2). While all groups recognized that there had been a decline in wildlife abundances and an increase in deforestation Agoi Ibami respondents had the greatest awareness of declines in wildl 2 = 62.31, p 2 = 102.9, p = <0.001). This awareness of declines could be related to the high levels of anthropogenic disturbance surrounding their community. However, Owai had the strongest positive attitudes towards supporting protected areas with 83% of respondents agreeing that it is important to set aside a piece of the forest 2 = 56.27, p = <0.001). Does contact with a NGO influence pro environmental behaviors? There were significant differ ences in pro environmental behaviors between project participants and the general population ( t = 8.39 df= 65, p = <0.001) and among the three communities ( f = 104.13, df =2, p = < 0.001) (Table 4 2). Project participants were more likely to state that they 2 = 13.7, p = <0.001) and


70 2 = 9.03, p = <0.001) than the general population. Project participants also self 2 = 73.1, p = <0. 001). Iko Esai community members were more likely to report an illegal activity than the other two communities. It is important to note that in general, community members (project participants, general population, and all villages) were unlikely to report an illegal activity. A majority (64%) of project participants and 44% of the combined general population felt that 2 = Over 87% of the general population and 83% of the project participants indicated that they would continue to buy and consume their favorite bushmeat even if they knew nsumption were often given to support their claims. Project participants stated tha t they would only would stop consuming their favorite bushmeat reported that they would switch to ed fish. Does contact with a NGO influence a conservation ethic?


71 knowledge, support and attitude toward conservation, support for sustainable consumption of resources, and behavior scores. The resulting ethic score was placed on a 5 point Likert scale with anchor points of 1 = very weak conservation ethic and 5 = very strong conservation ethic. An individual with a strong conservation ethic would have high sco res in each of the areas listed above. Principle component analysis showed that there is a correlation between knowledge of environmental laws and support for conservation and also between conservation attitudes and support for sustainable consumption of r 2 = 23.26, p age, and conservation behaviors were not significantly corre lated with any variable (Fig. 4 2a). Correspondence analysis showed that Iko Esai livelihood participants had the strongest conservation e thic followed by the Iko Esai control group, Agoi Ibami livelihood participants and the Owai control had a moderate conservation ethic and Agoi Ibami control h ad the weakest ethic (Fig. 4 2b). Discussion Results suggest that participation in livelihood pr ojects and contact with an NGO or other environmental staff is correlated with higher levels of support for conservation conservation but other potential contributing fact ors could be community factors: population size, forest dependence and rural development. levels of support for conservation and high conservation ethic. This community has th e highest level of contact and has had more outreach projects over more time than the ethic may be a result of contact with the National Park Service through a station office


72 located in the village. This could indicate that a permanent community presence of any environmental institution might improve support for conservation and a conservation park agents serve a similar role as CERCOPAN by educating the community members about the local environmental laws. Agoi Ibami is the most developed community with more access to domestic meats and more urban products than the other two communities. Acces s to these goods (food, medicine, and building materials, like bamboo and raffia). Agoi Ibami has higher average prices of bushmeat and lower species abundances than the othe r two communities (Vath et al. Chapter 3 ). Residents might use the purchase of bushmeat as a public display of wealth, similar to that of people in urban areas who pay h igh prices for bushmeat (Martin crease awareness of decline in wildlife abundances and an increase in deforestation but moderate support for establishing protected areas could indicate that they feel that their forest is too far gone to be saved and that the land would better serve local people if it was converted to agricultural lands. norms related to the acceptability of huntin g, consuming primates, and habitat preservation. Environmental education programs stress that it is illegal to shoot, eat, and have primates as pets; promote primates role as seed dispersers; and explain the dangers of disease transmission. However, commun


73 shows that the information participants recall is more related to the benefits of having a healthy forest ecosystem or that unsustainable practices will affect community livelihoods that are also presented in the programs. Re sults from the knowledge questions suggest community members are confused on the law of not shooting monkeys anywhere. Respondents understand that shooting primates in the CERCOPAN forest is illegal, some respondents were able to recognize that shooting a primate anywhere in the forest was bad, but almost everyone felt that shooting a primate outside the forest on farmland was acceptable. Respondents felt that wildlife was only valuable as a source of protein or income. They apparently do not perceive wildl ife to have an ecological or intrinsic value when left alive in the forest. Respondents stated in the open ended questions that they did not believe that eating primates was unhealthy because they were unaware of people becoming sick after ingesting primat e meat and that their elders had always eaten primates without negative consequences. Few seem to have any sense of potential local extinction of hunted animals. Due to lack of enforcement and the cultural norm of people not reporting illegal activities, t here are no negative consequences for individuals who kill, buy, and/or sell primates. These cultural norms are very strong and difficult to change. In order to change this social norm more effective adult education programs, enforcement, and efforts towar ds programs that will affect social norms will likely be needed to make hunting and consumption of primates a negative experience. Alternative protein and livelihood projects attempt to reduce pressure on wild game and create additional income. NGOs are o ften hesitant to report projects that do not meet pre conceived success measures because of negative consequences of


74 securing future funding. In this study the alternative protein projects did not generate income for over 80% of the participants or produce a viable alternative protein for community members to consume. Based on these outcomes the project could be perceived as a failure. However, the project participants have higher support for conservation than the general population and they expressed a wi llingness to participate in future projects. This could suggest that a project does not need to be financially successful (often a measure of success for funding agencies) to generate positive attitudes and satisfaction among participants. The act of meeti ng with CERCOPAN leaders weekly, being selected for the program, and feeling like they are a part of a new future trend could be enough to influence their attitudes. Increasing y factors to cultivate a socially and ecologically resilient system. It is important that financial outcomes are not the only measure of success used to quantify alternative livelihood project outcomes. The results demonstrate that a project can be an econ omic failure but still result in high levels of participant satisfaction and support for conservation. To increase financial success, however, we suggest the use of local game (e.g., grass cutter and other rodent species) because these species might fare b etter than domestic animals due to their higher reproductive and survival rates and their ability to subsist on local foods rather than expensive feed. In addition, they might be preferred as a food source since the cultural norm is to eat bushmeat. The us e of local wild game can help demystify community misconceptions about animal extinctions by providing opportunities to document species life history traits.


75 outreach and al ternative livelihood programs contribute to local stakeholders support for conservation and the adoption of pro environmental behaviors and are consistent with the findings of a vari ety of studies (Adams & Infield 2001; Mehta & Heinen 2001 ; Anthony 2007; B aral & Heinen 2007; Hutn et al. 2012 attitudes were positively affected, a change in cultural norms and behaviors pertaining to hunting and consumption of primates and perception of extinction may require additional efforts such as targeting church and hunters groups. This study did not link specific knowledge, attitude, and behavior questions but rather focused on general patterns related to contact with an NGO. Further investigation that is directly tied to education and development programs and their outcomes is warranted to better understand the connections between attitudes and behaviors. Without such understanding, NGOs, government policy makers, and local community leaders alike will be handicapped in their ability t o predict and prescribe the most socially and ecologically resilient management plans.


76 Figure 4 1. Map of the three communities in the study Agoi I bami, Iko Esai, and Owai and their proximity to CERCOPAN.


77 Table 4 1. Description of three communities that participated in the study Agoi Ibami Iko Esai Owai Ethnic group Agoi Tribe Iko Tribe Iko Tribe Language Agoi Iko Iko Estimated total population 9,000 4,600 2,000 Estimated adult population 4,400 1,500 800 General population sample 203 199 53 Project participants Pig 15 5 0 Chicken 14 4 0 Staff 2 19 1 TOTAL 31 28 1 Village area 63 hectares 20 hectares 13 hectares Level of rural development Moderate Low Very low Degree of contact with CERCOPAN Low High Very low Distance from CERCOPAN 16km 8km 54km Years working with CERCOPAN* 2 years 10 years 1 month Contact with other environmental staff (National Park Services) Low Low Moderate Forest management plan Government (forest reserve) Community (multiple use model) Community (multiple use model) Forest name Agoi Forest Reserve Iko Community Forest Iko Community Forest Total forest area 44km 2 210km 2 210km 2 *at start of study


78 Table 4 2. Mean survey scores and wealth indicators for the three communities Variable Agoi Ibami Iko Esai Owai Project participant n= 31 General population n = 203 Project participant n= 28 General population n = 199 General population n = 53 Mean knowledge score (SD) 4.14 ( 1.32) 3.74 ( 1.19) 5.96 ( 1.25) 6.03 ( 1.13) 4.66 ( 1.41) Mean attitude towards conservation score (SD) 3 ( 0.37) 2.96 ( 0.23) 3 ( 0.36) 3.15 ( 0.24) 2.86 ( 0.38) Mean attitude towards relationship with CERCOPAN score (SD) 3.73 ( 0.45) 3.49 ( 0.50) 3.75 ( 0.33) 3.93 ( 0.36) n/a Mean support for conservation score (SD) 2.66 ( 0.53) 2.61 ( 0.61) 3.77 (0.41) 3.64 ( 0.39) 2.54 ( 0.45) Mean support for sustainable consumption of resources score (SD) 2.6 ( 0.53) 2.18 ( 0.46) 2.9 ( 0.53) 2.60 ( 0.39) 2.63 ( 0.43) Mean pro environment behavior score (SD) 3 ( 0.39) 2.70 ( 0.29) 3 ( 0.44) 2.41 ( 0.23) 2.92 ( 0.23) Mean conservation ethic score (SD) 3.08 ( 0.33) 2.89 ( 0.28) 3.47 (0.27) 3.39 ( 0.24) 3.18 ( 0.29) Estimated monthly income (USD) range 0 333 0 2666 0 333 0 800 0 300 Estimated monthly income (USD) mean (SD) 90.71 ( 91.56) 248.31 ( 356.98) 110.81 ( 80.18) 119.10 ( 145.52) 97.16 ( 82.47) Average (SD) farm size (hectare) 3.2 ( 3.4 ) 2.9 ( 3.8 ) 1.8 ( 1.4 ) 3.1 ( 4.6 ) 2.6 ( 2.6 ) Percent of individuals with more than 5 goats 3% 15% 3% 13% 17% Percent of individuals that own transport 45% 51% 32% 30% 47%


79 Fig ure 4 2. Principle component analysis showing the correlation between conservation variables (a) and correspondence analysis showing conservation ethic between groups and villages.


80 CHAPTER 5 CONCLUSION Conclusion for Hunter Patterns and Bushmeat Trade : Summary of Key Findings for Hunter Behavior a nd Harvest This study reports the findings of a study of hunter behavior and harvest conducted in the Iko Community Forest and the villages of Agoi Ibami, Iko Esai, and Owai in Cross River State, Nigeria. Approximately 95% of the hunters interviewed participated in the r ural bushmeat trade and considered hunting to be their primary occupation. There were signifi cant differences between hunter s self reported offtake and the patrol shed censuses. Due to a lack of enforcement hunters freely admitted harvesting illegal spec ies; however, i t is believed that patrol were under reporting the number of encounters of hunters with illegal game (primates) due to social pressures and fear of retaliation. Hunters would travel until they encountered game and this often resulted in harv est in the edge and middle catchment areas. There was a trend for larger game to be harvested at greater distances to the village and agricultural lands. Species size and cons umer preference had the greatest influence on selling price. However, hunters wou ld charge more for game harvested at a greater distance. Hunters plenty However, a wareness of faunal declines did not appear to change hunters harvest patterns. The res ults indicate d that species selection wa s based upon random encounters rather than seeking out particular species. This is supported by the finding that less than 38% of hunters have a species specialization.


81 Implications of Findings for Hunter Be havior and Harvest for Conservation Although the se findings demonstrate that hunters have an awareness of faunal declines the hunters do not seem to understand the long term implications of ecological extinction. Hunter s had misconceptions about species biology and the p osition of the local NGO toward hunters and hunting. If preservation and protection of local species that are targeted for the bushmeat trade is to occur hunters must be educated and informed about biologi cal principles and integrated into the management and decision making process. Recommendations for CERCOPAN CERCOPAN is meeting its objectives in cultivating a working relationship among community members. However, I suggest that they make more of an effo rt to develop projects that target hunters. Developing and implementing wildlife biology education programs directed at hunters is encouraged. Continuing to employ hunters as CERCOPAN staff will also help reduce the number of hunters in the forest and inc rease positive relationships with a key stakeholder group. Institute Hunter Auto Regulation The current enforcement and punishment policy does not seem to be effective in deterring hunters from harvesting illegal species Hunters and community members have as benefiting themselves If possible council to revise the current policy to allow the hunter s group to decide the fine attached to illegal harvest and a portion should be given to the hunters group and the specific hunter who turned in the guilty party. Additionally, the hunter groups should be encouraged to develop t heir own


82 The determined period sting an enforcement their behavior towards illegal activities might change. Increase Monitoring and Evaluation CERCOPAN should make every effort to continue the community forest patrols. hunters also to self report their harvest when exiting the forest. Education seminars on the benefits of wildlife monitoring should be developed and imp lemented to increase transparency between CERCOPAN and the hunters groups. Hunters should also be involved with the monitoring of wildlife through transects and camera/filming projects. By being part of the monitoring their understanding of species abundan ce could be impacted and changed. Conclusion for N GO Impact on Conservation Attitudes and Behavior Study Summary of Key F indings The findings suggest that a NGO s conservation effort in community outreach, alternative livelihood programs, and inclusion of local people in biodiversity conservation contribute d to the adoptio n of pro environment behaviors and an increased conservation ethic. Even though l ivelihood programs did not generate significant incomes, participants reported high levels of satisfaction. The general population and project participants all recognized a decline in wildlife and increases in deforestation. All subjects showed some level of support for conservation of the forests; however, less


83 than 20% of respondents reported that they would stop purchasing endangered or illegal species from hunters. Recommendations for CERCOPAN One of the biggest challenges facing CERCOPAN is that many of the community members do not believe in extinction. Community members also expressed an attitude continue to purchase it as long as it was available. Community members reported that they would only switch to alternative protein products when their preferred protein was no longer available. In order to reduce dependence on local wildlife it is suggested that CERCOPAN develops and implements alternative protein projects that focus on local wild game rather than domestic animals. Thryonomys swinderianus ) and the giant African snail ( Archachatina marginata ) are two examples of species that can be easily farmed by individuals instead of entering the forest for harvesting. These programs will also help local community members learn about species life history traits and this could help change their views on species extinction and reproductive biology. Concluding R emark Protected areas and community based conservation are both important if we want to protect and preserve species and habitats in pe rpetuity. Programs often have success in generating positive attitudes toward conservation suggesting that the general presence of NGOs is good. Reduction in exploitation and sustainable use outcomes are often rare and m inimal There is a st rong inclinatio n to achieve conservation goals but it cannot be achieved in a vacuum. U ntil the issues surrounding health, poverty, local


84 rights, and education are addressed in concert with the needs of wildlife, sustainability will be impossible. The challenges facing CERCOPAN, the local communities, and the wildlife are immense. With increasing populations the need for additional agricultural lands will likely put the protection and preservation of the flora and fauna in direct conflict with the demands of the local pe ople. In order to ensure the ecological integrity and economic sustainab ility of these systems CERCOPAN s programs could be vital in maintaining the positive relationships among community members and increasing support for conservation.


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92 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Carrie L. Vath earned her Bachelor of Scie nce in zoology with a minor in a nthropology from Humboldt State University i n 2003. She received her Master of Science in Interdisciplinary e cology with a concentration in a nthropology from the University of Florida in 2008. She received her Ph.D. in the spring of 2014 in i n terdisciplinary e cology with a concentration in zoology and certificates in tropical conservation and development and environmental education and c ommunication from the University of Florida. Dr. Vath was the recipient of several honors inc luding the Graduate Student Mentor Award and William C. and Bertha M. Cornett Fellowship. While pursuing her degree, Dr. Vath worked as the Undergraduate Tutor Coordinator at the UF Teaching Center and taught a variety of courses including, primate behavio r and applied conservation biology. Dr. Vath has presented her research at international conferences and to the general public. Additionally, she has shared her findings with the local communities she worked with through local publications in Nigeria. She continue s her relationship with CERCOPAN as a member of the board of trusties where she develop s environmental education programs and protocols for monitoring the bushmeat trade. Social and economic dimensions of the bushmeat trad e in cross river state Nigeria: an ethno biological approach to conservation was supervised by Dr. Scott K. Robinson.