Categories
Environment Learning

Motivators of Conservation Behavior Change and Pathways to Tap Into Them

Watched Motivators of Conservation Behavior Change and Pathways to Tap Into Them from Eventbrite

This webinar will introduce you to social science tools to amplify strategies to motivate conservation action using a framework to explore diverse pathways to behavior change. These tools provide new lenses and resources to frame communications and mobilize audiences, as well as ideas for adaptive management and evaluation. Participants will get a sneak peek at a soon-to-be-released workbook on pathways to motivating conservation behavior change, designed by the presenters and partners.

Presented by SMANA

Presenters: Lily Maynard, PhD and Lauren Watkins, PhD

Case study: Tanzania chimpanzee habitat protection

  • problem: despite conservation efforts, land still being degraded — small-scale farming biggest contributor to river forest deforestation — they were moving where they farmed because of soil infertility
  • answer: composting!
  • started by engaging with the community
  • baseline survey & interviews: 800 households, 30 villages (who they trust, where they get info)
  • org goal = save forests; farmers’ goal = provide for family; reframing: you have everything around you
  • pilot launch in 3 villages
  • “care for the forest, care for the family”
  • football and netball tournaments; music video; dancing mascot performances; ambassador farmers — raise awareness
  • demo farms to show compost benefits; ambassador farmers trained and built demonstration compost heaps at their homes; made flyer / cartoon
  • trained 400 farmers; thousands of farmers participating — high adoption rates — 5000 compost heaps created
  • taking action good — need to sustain the action too
  • distributed 240000 kg compost samples; farming calendars; radio spots
  • 70% farmers used compost 3+ seasons; 90% farmers believe composting will become typical ag practice in their community
  • will follow up with spatial awareness to see if encouraging composting has reduced damage to habitat
Categories
Science

Mutational meltdown

Watched The Island of the Last Surviving Mammoths from pbs.org

The Wrangel Island mammoths would end up being the final survivors of a once widespread genus. In their final years, after having thrived in many parts of the world for millions of years, the very last mammoths that ever lived experienced what’s known as a mutational meltdown.

An isolated mammoth population survived an extra 6000 years past mainland mammoths… but accumulated so many negative mutations (deletions, mutations) they eventually died out too.

Minimum viable population is about 500 individuals, with 1000 to prevent negative genetic drift — only about 300 mammoths lived on Wrangel Island.

Understanding how species went extinct can help us better protect small isolated populations (e.g. cheetahs, otters) from mutational meltdown.