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Abstract

We surveyed a sample of 204 individuals selected from the public in Brisbane, Australia, to ascertain the extent to which they like or dislike 24 species of wildlife present in tropical Australia. The species belong to three classes: mammals, birds and reptiles. We calculated likeability indices for each of these species. We also asked respondents if they favoured the survival of each of these species and so the percentage of respondents favouring survival of each of these species could be calculated. Thus, using linear regression analysis, the percentage of respondents favouring survival of each of the species was related to their indices of likeability. In addition, the data enables the average likeability of species in the three classes (mammals, birds and reptiles) to be compared with the average support for survival of species in each of these three classes. As a result, we are able to assess how important stated likeability seems to be for preferences for survival of species, and to reconsider the hypothesis in the literature that there is likely to be more public support for the survival of mammals than for birds than for reptiles.

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