Sport Hunting to Save Nature? The Case of Uganda

Ochieng, A.; Visseren-Hamakers, Ingrid; Duim, V.R. van der


After having banned sport hunting in 1979, Uganda reintroduced it in 2001 around Lake Mburo National Park, and in 2006 in the Kabwoya and Kaiso-Tonya Game Management Area, with the aim to reduce human-wildlife conflicts, especially poaching, by providing incentives for the local inhabitants in order to positively change residents’ attitudes towards wildlife. We conducted interviews and reviewed documents to analyse and evaluate the impacts of reintroduction of sport hunting. The income generated from sport hunting was used to provide
social services and implement social development projects. There was no proof of hunting income being used for conservation purposes. Although the local perceptions of the sport hunting benefits varied, the benefits did initially
help to improve local residents’ attitudes towards wildlife and poaching temporarily stopped—but resumed later. Hence, this study shows that the
common underlying assumption of sport hunting policies and other market- and
community-based approaches to conservation—that when local residents receive benefits, they will appreciate wildlife—is debatable.