A large number of sustainable use reserves recently have been titled in the Brazilian Amazonia. These reserves require public participation in the design and implementation of management and monitoring programs. Species-monitoring programs that engage local stakeholders may be useful for assessing wildlife status over the long term. We collaborated on the development of a participatory program to monitor forest vertebrates in the Piagaçu-Purus Sustainable Development Reserve and to build capacity among the local people. We examined relations between the distance to the nearest human community and sighting rates of each species, and evaluated the program overall. Eighteen wildlife monitors received training in line transect and sign surveys and then conducted surveys along a total of ten transects. Sighting rates of most species in the Piagaçu-Purus Sustainable Development Reserve were higher than those reported in other Amazonian forests. Distance to the human community was not associated with the overall vertebrate sighting rate. Use of the trained monitors was successful in terms of data acquisition and engagement. The involvement of local people promoted discussions about regulation of hunting in the reserve. Implementation of community-based programs to monitor forest wildlife in Amazonian sustainable use reserves may empower local communities and assess the status of wildlife through time.
Environmental Management – Springer Journals
Published: May 12, 2017
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