Inclusive anti-poaching? Exploring the potential and challenges of community-based anti-poaching

Francis Masse, Alan Gardiner, Rodgers Lubilo, Martha Ntlhaele Themba

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Abstract

As it is acknowledged that the largely (para)militarised approach to anti-poaching has its limitations, alternative approaches to conservation law enforcement are being sought. One alternative, what we call inclusive anti-poaching, focuses on including people from local communities in anti- poaching initiatives. Using a case study of a community programme from southern Mozambique, located adjacent to South Africa’s Kruger National Park, we examine the potential of a community ranger initiative to move towards a more inclusive and sustainable approach to anti-poaching
and conservation. While highlighting its challenges and potential drawbacks, we argue that including local people in conservation law enforcement efforts can help address poaching and the problematic aspects of current anti-poaching measures. However, to be a genuine and sustainable alternative, community ranger programmes must be part of a broader shift towards developing local wildlife economies that benefit local communities, as opposed to supporting pre-existing anti- poaching interventions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-27
JournalSouth African Crime Quarterly
Volume60
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 23 Jun 2017
Externally publishedYes

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