Usually hated, sometimes loved: A review of wild ungulates' contributions to people

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Pascual-Rico, Roberto and Morales-Reyes, Zebensui and Aguilera-Alcalá, Natividad and Olszańska, Agnieszka and Sebastián-González, Esther and Naidoo, Robin and Moleón, Marcos and Lozano Mendoza, Jorge and Botella, Francisco and Wehrden, Henrik von and Martín-López, Berta and Sánchez-Zapata, José A. (2021) Usually hated, sometimes loved: A review of wild ungulates' contributions to people. Science of the Total Environment, 801 (149652). pp. 1-11. ISSN 0048-9697, ESSN: 1879-1026

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2021.149652



Abstract

Nature's contributions to people (NCP) may be both beneficial and detrimental to humans' quality of life. Since our origins, humans have been closely related to wild ungulates, which have traditionally played an outstanding role as a source of food or raw materials. Currently, wild ungulates are declining in some regions, but recovering in others throughout passive rewilding processes. This is reshaping human-ungulate interactions. Thus, adequately understanding the benefits and detriments associated with wild ungulate populations is necessary to promote humanungulate co-existence. Here, we reviewed 575 articles (2000-2019) on human-wild ungulate interactions to identify key knowledge gaps on NCP associated with wild ungulates. Wild ungulate research was mainly distributed into seven research clusters focussing on: (1) silvicultural damage in Eurasia; (2) herbivory and natural vegetation; (3) conflicts in urban areas of North America; (4) agricultural damage in Mediterranean agro-ecosystems; (5) social research in Africa and Asia; (6) agricultural damage in North America; (7) research in natural American Northwest areas. Research mostly focused on detrimental NCP. However, the number of publications mentioning beneficial contributions increased after the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services conceptual framework was implemented. Human-ungulate interactions' research was biased towards the Global North and Cervidae, Suidae and Bovidae families. Regarding detrimental NCP, most publications referred to production damage (e.g. crops), followed by biodiversity damage, and material damage (e.g. traffic collisions). Regarding beneficial NCP, publications mainly highlighted non-material contributions (e.g. recreational hunting), followed by material NCP and regulating contributions (e.g. habitat creation). The main actions taken to manage wild ungulate populations were lethal control and using deterrents and barriers (e.g. fencing), which effectiveness was rarely assessed. Increasing research and awareness about beneficial NCP and effective management tools may help to improve the conservation of wild ungulates and the ecosystems they inhabit to facilitate people-ungulate co-existence in the Anthropocene.


Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Artiodactyla; Ecological functions, Herbivores; Human-wildlife relations; Mammal management; Perissodactyla
Subjects:Medical sciences > Biology > Ecology
Medical sciences > Biology > Mammals
ID Code:69984
Deposited On:03 Feb 2022 09:59
Last Modified:17 Feb 2022 12:52

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