Involving a diversity of stakeholders in conservation issues is an important and growing trend in wildlife management. My thesis provides a case study of a collaborative conservation effort in which representatives from sportsmen’s and environmental groups came together to advise the Arizona Game and Fish Department in a project to restore bighorn sheep to the Santa Catalina Mountains near Tucson, Arizona. These stakeholders formed the Catalina Bighorn Sheep Restoration Advisory Committee to help address the human dimension factors of the project, build public support, and guide project planning and implementation. In addition to participant observation and document analysis informing my study, I surveyed 31 stakeholders both on and off the Advisory Committee and interviewed key Advisory Committee members. All stakeholders were in favor of collaborative conservation. However, there were objections to this particular Advisory Committee for this particular project. Although stakeholders had a diversity of values that informed their beliefs, the Advisory Committee members who took the time to understand the science involved, develop mutual trust and respect for others at the table, and held a strong commitment to the project goals were able to shift deeply held, values-based beliefs and find consensus on contentious project elements. This included agreeing on a mountain lion management plan that called for the killing of mountain lions that preyed on the newly reintroduced bighorn sheep. Stakeholders not on the Advisory Committee did not come to agreement on most elements of the project. This study contributes to the understanding of collaborative conservation efforts by providing a case study of a controversial wildlife conservation project that involved diverse stakeholders who worked together, successfully found consensus, and achieved their main goal of getting bighorn sheep back on the mountain.
|Commitee:||Altrichter, Mariana, Duberstein, Jennifer|
|School Location:||United States -- Arizona|
|Source:||MAI 57/04M(E), Masters Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Wildlife Conservation, Conservation biology, Natural Resource Management|
|Keywords:||Arizona, Bighorn sheep, Collaborative conservation, Stakeholder involvement, Translocation, Wildlife value orientations|
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