Contributions of non-consumptive wildlife tourism to conservation
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Wildlife tourism has the potential to contribute to conservation through a variety of mechanisms. This chapter presents a preliminary assessment of the extent to which this potential is currently being realised, comparing tourism based on viewing of animals in captive settings (with a focus on federated zoos) with that in free-ranging situations (wildlife watching). The key mechanisms involved are: direct wildlife management and research; use of income derived from wildlife tourism to fund conservation; education of visitors to behave in a more conservation-friendly manner; political lobbying in support of conservation; and provision of a socio-economic incentive for conservation. All of these occur in at least some zoos and wildlife-watching situations, and collectively the contribution of non-consumptive wildlife tourism to conservation is significant, though impossible to quantify. The key strengths of the zoo sector in this regard are ils inputs into captive breeding and its potential to educate large numbers of people. In contrast, wildlife watching provides significant socio-economic incentives /or conservation of natural habitats .. There seem to be significant opportunities for expanding the role of non-consumptive wildlife tourism in conservation ..
Nature-based Tourism, Environment, and Land Management