Original Research

An investigation into factors influencing attitudes towards hunting amongst the economically active public in Port Elizabeth.

Wentzel C. Coetzer, Pieter du P. van Niekerk
Suid-Afrikaanse Tydskrif vir Natuurwetenskap en Tegnologie | Vol 31, No 1 | a38 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/satnt.v31i1.38 | © 2012 Wentzel C. Coetzer, Pieter du P. van Niekerk | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 18 July 2011 | Published: 28 August 2012

About the author(s)

Wentzel C. Coetzer, Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, South Africa
Pieter du P. van Niekerk, Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, South Africa


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Abstract

A survey on attitudes towards hunting was conducted amongst the economically active public in Port Elizabeth during 2009. The aim was to identify and investigate factors influencing public attitudes towards hunting. Hunting has become an essential part of conservation and wildlife management on game farms. Negative attitudes towards hunting within the larger society have become a threat to the hunting industry, which in turn may jeopardise conservation and the effective management of game. This social threat was investigated by conducting a survey amongst a statistically representative sample of the economically active public in Port Elizabeth. Two sampling procedures, namely simple random sampling and proportional stratified sampling, were followed to ensure that a statistically representative sample was obtained. Self-administered questionnaires were used as the survey instrument. A total of 384 questionnaires were completed. Various factors influencing public attitudes towards hunting were identified and investigated, and it was found that the extent to which a person has been exposed to hunting, as well as a person’s social ties have a significant influence on attitudes towards hunting. Furthermore, negative attitudes towards hunting amongst the public are based on misconceptions regarding hunting. The perception that hunting is not an important part of wildlife management as well as the belief that hunting endangers wildlife are largely responsible for provoking negative attitudes towards hunting. Incorrect perceptions regarding hunting need to be addressed by educating the public about wildlife and the importance of hunting in the management of wildlife on game farms and privately owned land. The public also needs to be convinced that the primary motivation for hunting is based on wildlife management considerations and ecological concerns.

Keywords

wildbestuur; jag; wild; houdings; persepsies; openbare mening

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