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Elephant Crop Damage: Subsistence Farmers’ Social Vulnerability, Livelihood Sustainability and Elephant Conservation

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Department of Zoology and Aquatic Sciences, The Copperbelt University, Riverside Campus, P.O. Box 21692, Kitwe, Zambia
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Monash University South Africa, Directorate of Water Research Node, Private Bag X60, Roodepoort 1725, Johannesburg, South Africa
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Dag Hammarskjöld Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies, The Copperbelt University, Riverside Campus, P.O. Box 21692, Kitwe, Zambia
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Department of National Parks and Wildlife, Private Bag 1, Chilanga 10100, Zambia
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2018, 10(10), 3572; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10103572
Received: 20 August 2018 / Revised: 25 September 2018 / Accepted: 26 September 2018 / Published: 7 October 2018
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Agriculture)
African elephants (Loxodonta africana) induce considerable crop damage risks, shocks and stresses on subsistence farmers at the wildlife-agriculture interface. In this study, we explored the social dimensions of human-elephant interactions in the wildlife-agrarian landscape. The study aimed at unraveling the associated hazardous conditions and nature of the subsistence farmers’ social vulnerability and practices with respect to elephant crop damage, subsistence farmers’ livelihoods, and elephant conservation. Applying qualitative thematic content analysis, the sustainable livelihood framework (SLF) and additive generalized linear models (GLMs), this study revealed that the status of relational social capital influences human-elephant conflict (HEC) management and subsistence farmers’ responses, regardless of the farmers’ social learning and environmental values about the social-ecological system. The strengthening of multiple local stakeholder participation, institutional governance and access to livelihoods assets are needed for human food security and elephant conservation. Adoption of more effective nuanced crop protection counter-measures against elephants at farm level is urgently needed. View Full-Text
Keywords: crop protection; disaster risk reduction; environmental attitudes; Loxodonta africana; relational social capital crop protection; disaster risk reduction; environmental attitudes; Loxodonta africana; relational social capital
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MDPI and ACS Style

Nyirenda, V.R.; Nkhata, B.A.; Tembo, O.; Siamundele, S. Elephant Crop Damage: Subsistence Farmers’ Social Vulnerability, Livelihood Sustainability and Elephant Conservation. Sustainability 2018, 10, 3572. https://doi.org/10.3390/su10103572

AMA Style

Nyirenda VR, Nkhata BA, Tembo O, Siamundele S. Elephant Crop Damage: Subsistence Farmers’ Social Vulnerability, Livelihood Sustainability and Elephant Conservation. Sustainability. 2018; 10(10):3572. https://doi.org/10.3390/su10103572

Chicago/Turabian Style

Nyirenda, Vincent R.; Nkhata, Bimo A.; Tembo, Oscar; Siamundele, Susan. 2018. "Elephant Crop Damage: Subsistence Farmers’ Social Vulnerability, Livelihood Sustainability and Elephant Conservation" Sustainability 10, no. 10: 3572. https://doi.org/10.3390/su10103572

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