Worldwide, wildlife poaching results in significant losses to biodiversity, especially for those species which are most vulnerable and at risk of extinction. Strategies exist for reducing poaching pressure, including anti-poaching patrols that collect and remove wire snares. Studies are available that focus on the impact of poaching. Yet, not much work evaluates the effectiveness of poaching mitigation actions. We outline a modelling methodology that aims to predict the effectiveness of different management strategies on the poaching problem in the Phou Chomvoy Provincial Protected Area, Bolikhamxay Province, Lao PDR. Wildlife management in the study involves the local community through villager-led anti-poaching patrols. The goal is to develop a quantified relationship between patrol inputs and biodiversity outcomes. The results show that, without patrols, 18 out of the 19 species investigated would be poached and removed from the protected area over the next ten years. At low levels of patrol-effort ten species would survive. With increasing patrol effort, the total number of animals and species saved increase, but with diminishing marginal effect on species count improvement. At the highest patrol-effort management scenario modelled, all species are saved except for one; the Northern Pig-Tailed Macaque, which goes extinct under all management scenarios. This is the first time modelling has been undertaken at this scale to examine poacher-patrol interaction in the Southeast Asia region. Our work shows a positive effect of patrol effort on the number of endangered species saved. This work will be used to inform protected area management policy in Lao PDR, specifically, the development of Payment for Environmental Services schemes.


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