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Towards a resolution of the raptor-grouse conflict in upland Britain - the application of decision modelling with stakeholders

AuthorsRedpath, Steve; Arroyo, Beatriz CSIC ORCID ; Leckie, Fiona; Bacon, P.; Bayfield, N.; Thirgood, S. J.; Gutiérrez, Rocky J.
KeywordsGamebird hunting
Raptor-prey relationships
Raptor conservation
Management techniques
Human-wildlife conflicts
Great Britain
Issue DateJun-2002
PublisherCSIC-UCLM - Instituto de Investigación en Recursos Cinegéticos (IREC)
Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (Great Britain)
CitationREGHAB Project. Report on Workpackage 5
AbstractThere is a conflict in upland Britain between grouse managers and conservation organisations over the management of legally protected raptor species and in particular hen harriers Circus cyaneus. A number of potential solutions have been proposed, but their likelihood of success depends upon how acceptable they are to key stakeholders. We used Multiple Criteria Decision Models with two groups of stakeholders (grouse managers – GM, and raptor conservationists - RC) to quantify the relative importance of evaluation criteria, and use these to score various moorland management options and harrier management options. This technique showed that for assessing the value of moorland, more importance was placed on economic factors by GM, whilst RC valued species richness and abundance factors more highly. Intensively managed grouse moors were ranked most highly by GM and managed nature reserves by RC, but both groups ranked highly the management option of intensively managed grouse moors with no raptor control. For evaluating hen harrier management options, GM considered timescale and cost to be more important criteria than RC did, whilst RC considered legal constraints more important than GM. Among the management techniques considered, GM favoured quota schemes and RC favoured allowing harriers to breed unmanipulated. However, supplementary feeding was scored highly by both groups, although GM were concerned about the long-term impacts of such a technique. It was perceived that the process highlighted room for compromise and common ground about the most suitable management option, but participants considered that the lack of trust between stakeholders would prevent its implementation. The workshop highlighted the need to 1) develop the dialogue established here, 2) develop trust between the groups and 3) to conduct research to test the effectiveness of the different management options. There was however broad agreement that the workshop had moved individual positions and was a useful tool in helping to resolve human-wildlife conflicts.
Description27 pages.-- REGHAB Project: Report on Workpackage 5 – Deliverable no 18.
Appears in Collections:(IREC) Informes y documentos de trabajo

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