Improving engagement in managing reintroduction conflicts: learning from beaver reintroduction


Social factors hold implications for the success or failure of wildlife reintroductions. Potential conflict issues may prevent projects from proceeding or succeeding. The manner in which wildlife managers engage with affected people in conflict scenarios may prevent or contribute toward conflict escalation, so an understanding of how to improve engagement is required. We conducted interviews with individuals who reported conflicts with beavers (Castor fiber) within the case study of a reintroduction trial in England, called the ‘River Otter Beaver Trial’. Using a qualitative thematic analysis, we identified five themes to be considered when engaging with affected people in beaver reintroduction conflicts: (1) Proactive Engagement or a Fast Response; (2) Appropriate Communication; (3) Shared Decision-Making; (4) Sense that Humans are Responsible for Conflicts with Reintroduced Species; (5) A Need for Certainty. We conclude that engagement with affected individuals will likely be improved, with reduced conflict potential, where these themes are addressed.

Read the full article in Journal of Environmental Planning and Management

Eurasian Beaver (river Otter) photo credit Roger Auster
Research article
Published: 10 November 2020
Roger E.Auster
Stewart W.Barr
Richard E.Brazier
College of Life and Environmental Sciences, University of Exeter, Amory Building, Rennes Drive, Streatham Campus, Exeter, EX4 4RJ, United Kingdom
Published in:
Journal for Environmental Planning and Management

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