HUMAN/WILDLIFE INTERACTIONS, BOSQUE DEL APACHE NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE.
AuthorCOOPER, TAMSIE ANN.
KeywordsWildlife refuges -- New Mexico -- Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge.
Wilderness area users.
Nature -- Effect of human beings on.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractHuman/wildlife interactions at the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge were investigated in this research. Personal interviews and a mapping exercise were used to examine a variety of questions about recreational use. These included visitor backgrounds (their recreational histories, socioeconomic profiles, and past refuge visits), their perceptions (of current and proposed management policies, and visitor effects on wildlife), and their experiences of the refuge (their activities, most memorable experiences and exploration of the environment). Most visitors questioned were middle-aged individuals who resided in New Mexico. The refuge's unique character--its diversity of wildlife and landscape features--was perceived as its greatest asset. Visitors saw the refuge as a wildlife sanctuary, protected and controlled by officials who prevented visitors from having damaging impacts on the resource. While visitors differed by season of visit and purpose of visit, most did agree that the refuge should be managed for the sake of wildlife first. After that, visitors felt that it should be managed for the sake of recreation. Snow Geese responses to certain visitor behaviors were also examined. Simulations of visitor behaviors were made in the presence of small groups of geese. Behavioral observations of geese were made prior to, during, and after simulations. Environmental factors (weather, habitat, and temporal) were also examined. This analysis revealed a general tendency among geese to respond to visitor simulations in characteristic ways. However, variations in geese responses were also observed. Several factors may have most strongly influenced geese behavior. The predictability of visitor behaviors as perceived by geese influenced their patterns of response. Then too, certain environmental factors (habitat and temporal) were important, as well as the particular nature of the animal behaviors themselves. This research indicates that significant transactions occur between people, animals, and the environment. Understanding them is crucial in managing natural resources for ecological as well as recreational values.
Degree ProgramRenewable Natural Resources