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Resources 2019, 8(1), 22; https://doi.org/10.3390/resources8010022

Attitudes of Local Communities towards Marula Tree (Sclerocarya birrea subsp. caffra) Conservation at the Villages of Ha-Mashau and Ha-Mashamba in Limpopo Province, South Africa

Department of Geography, Environmental Management and Energy Studies, University of Johannesburg, P.O. Box 524, Auckland Park 2006, South Africa
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Received: 30 November 2018 / Revised: 26 December 2018 / Accepted: 16 January 2019 / Published: 21 January 2019
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Abstract

The marula tree (Sclerocarya birrea subsp. caffra), a common species in sub-Saharan Africa, grows naturally in both protected and communal land. Although considerable research has been undertaken on these trees in southern Africa, to the authors’ knowledge, the attitudes of local communities towards the protection of marula trees, particularly in communal land, has not been researched. This study intends to fill this gap in knowledge by examining the attitudes of local people towards conservation of marula trees. Studying the attitudes of people can provide insights on how they behave and how they are willing to coexist with S. birrea. The case study is set in Limpopo Province of South Africa in the villages of Ha-Mashau (Thondoni) and Ha-Mashamba where marula trees grow naturally. To fulfil the aim of this study, door-to-door surveys were carried out in 2018 and questionnaire interviews were used as the main data collection tool in 150 randomly selected households. The study revealed that local communities in the study area had positive attitudes towards conservation of marula trees. Strategies that are used by local communities to protect marula trees in communal land are discussed. View Full-Text
Keywords: attitudes; conservation; communities; marula tree; villages attitudes; conservation; communities; marula tree; villages
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Sinthumule, N.I.; Mashau, M.L. Attitudes of Local Communities towards Marula Tree (Sclerocarya birrea subsp. caffra) Conservation at the Villages of Ha-Mashau and Ha-Mashamba in Limpopo Province, South Africa. Resources 2019, 8, 22.

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