We assessed relationships between the extent to which farmers reported exposure to relevant information and their attitudes towards, knowledge about, and degree of adoption of riparian management strategies. We also examined associations between knowledge of, or receipt of, financial assistance for riparian fencing/planting and intentions for and extent of adoption of this strategy. A mail survey of 718 pastoral farmers in Otago and Southland in New Zealand (294 surveys returned (41%)) yielded 279 usable questionnaires. Indices were developed to reflect range and frequency of information use and range of practices adopted. Attitudes were measured using Likert-type responses to 11 statements, and knowledge as a score on a ten-question true/false test. Positive relationships between information and the three main response variables (attitude, knowledge, and adoption) were weak but significant and systematic. These associations remained significant when important demographic and farm characteristics were taken into account. Informed farmers were more likely to report intentions to carry out riparian fencing or planting within the next year. Farmers who were aware that funding was available were also more likely to state this intention, independent of information level. The reported extent to which waterways had been fenced to exclude stock was related to receipt of funding, but not to information level. Financial factors were the most influential barrier preventing adoption of permanent fencing. Our research shows a positive correlation between the receipt of information and funding and the adoption of specific riparian management measures.
Environmental Management – Springer Journals
Published: Nov 1, 2002
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