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ISSN: 2332-2543

Journal of Biodiversity & Endangered Species
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  • Research Article   
  • J Biodivers Endanger Species 2017, Vol 5(4): 203
  • DOI: 10.4172/2332-2543.1000203

Conservation Opportunities and Local Community Attitudes towards Wildlife in Harenna Forest, South East Ethiopia

Mekonen S1*, Chinasho A2, Berhanu K3 and Tesfaye S4
1Department of Wildlife and Ecotourism Management, Wolkite University, Ethiopia
2Department of Environmental Science, Wolaita Sodo University, Ethiopia
3Department of Tourism Management, Debre Berehan University, Ethiopia
4Department of Tourism Management, Madda Walabu University, P. O. Box 247, Ethiopia
*Corresponding Author : Mekonen S, Department of Wildlife and Ecotourism Management, Wolkite University, Ethiopia, Tel: +251 11 543 2311, Email: [email protected]

Received Date: Oct 30, 2017 / Accepted Date: Dec 08, 2017 / Published Date: Dec 12, 2017

Abstract

The study was conducted in Harenna Forest between March and June, 2016, with the objectives of assessing the conservation opportunities and local community attitudes towards wildlife in the communities. Questionnaire, interviews and focus group discussions were used to collect data. A total of 340 respondents were included for household questioner by systematic random sampling method while 11 respondents were purposively selected and for an in-depth interview survey. The data revealed that in terms of the opportunities of wildlife conservation, respondents’ responses mostly agreed for the existence of benefit sharing between locals and government (50%), presence of conservation organizations (89.7%), local communities are well aware and keen on wildlife (68.9%), community participation to conserve wildlife (78.5%), full sense of ownership towards the forest and wildlife (74.2%), management programmes implementation (78.6%), high priority of government bodies for conservation (89.1%) and an education and awareness creation program (74.1%). Out of the total respondents, 19 (5.59%) opposed the existing wildlife conservation systems, while 317 (93.23%) supported. Despite these existing wildlife conservation opportunities, wildlife continue to be threatened in and around the Harenna forest through overgrazing by livestock, firewood collection, settlement and agriculture expansions and wildfires. In addition, local community pays less attention to conservation of forest and wild animals. This study therefore, recommend that, enhancement awareness creation programme and involvement of local people in the participation of wildlife in Harenna Forest Conservation Area.

Keywords: Attitudes; Harenna forest; Opportunities; Wildlife conservation

Citation: Mekonen S, Chinasho A, Berhanu K, Tesfaye S (2017) Conservation Opportunities and Local Community Attitudes towards Wildlife in Harenna Forest, South East Ethiopia. J Biodivers Endanger Species 5: 203. Doi: 10.4172/2332-2543.1000203

Copyright: ©2017 Mekonen S, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

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