Research Article

Community attitudes towards wildlife management in the Bolivian Chaco

Andrew J. Noss c1 and Rosa Leny Cuéllara1

a1 Proyecto Kaa-lya, Casilla 6272, Santa Cruz, Bolivia


The process of community wildlife management in the Izozog area of the Bolivian Chaco began with participatory field research – self-monitoring of hunting activities and research on key game species. On-going discussions in community meetings have elicited seven wildlife management recommendations: (1) establishing hunting zones, (2) hunting only adults, (3) hunting only males during the reproductive season, (4) hunting only for the family's needs, (5) hunting only abundant animals, (6) protecting plants that are important to wildlife, and (7) prohibiting hunting by outsiders. We compare community attitudes towards these management measures. A majority of communities favour, in decreasing order, measures 7, 4, 6 and 1, communities are divided with respect to measures 2 and 3, and most communities oppose measure 5. Two socio-economic characteristics of communities – location and ethnicity – are associated with patterns of attitudes towards wild-life management among communities, whereas religion, economic activity and community size are not. Izoceño communities are currently reinterpreting traditional beliefs both to support and to oppose active wildlife management measures.

(Accepted June 04 2001)


c1 WCS-Bolivia, Casilla 6272, Santa Cruz, Bolivia. E-mail: anoss@infonet.com.bo

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