2021
  • Non-ICIMOD publication

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Community-based trophy hunting programs secure biodiversity and livelihoods: Learnings from Asia's high mountain communities and landscapes

  • Lipy Adhikari
  • Babar Khan
  • Srijana Joshi
  • Long Ruijun
  • Ghulam Ali
  • Ghulam Muhammad Shah
  • Muhammad Ismail
  • Kosar Bano
  • Rehmat Ali
  • Garee Khan
  • Binaya Pasakhala
  • Ajaz Ali
  • Summary

The benefits for biodiversity and human wellbeing are debated for many countries. Some communities in rural mountain areas of the world consider trophy hunting as an integrated conservation and development strategy to protect biodiversity and sustain livelihood. This review will provide the evidence that has been gathered to discuss the benefits of CHTP in the HKPL landscape focusing on Pakistan and Tajikistan”. Trophy hunting, which is intensely debated these days, is perhaps confused with the underlying philosophy of community-based trophy hunting programs. This paper seeks to inform these discussions with a fresh perspective on CTHP based on first-hand experience and learning from the high mountain landscapes and communities of Asia - Pakistan and Tajikistan. The article essentially reviews the effectiveness of CTHP model for conserving rare and threatened wildlife populations, protected and conserved areas, and community welfare and economic uplift. Results reveal that CTHP has been instrumental in halting illegal hunting and poaching wildlife and eventually increasing their populations in many important yet isolated habitats while improving community livelihood and local economy. The CTHP forms a vital part of the rural socio-ecological resilience for remote and isolated mountain communities. It has offered economic incentives for an integrated conservation and development paradigm to combat wildlife poaching and illegal trade and diversify livelihoods harness vital biodiversity conservation values. The paper also elaborates on the societal impact of financial flows and their use for improved lives and enterprises. There are however, some significant problems related to trophy hunting programmes, including the lack of accurate information to understand the effect of trophy hunting on herd structure and size, weak policy implementation, lack of transparency and corruption. Regular monitoring of wildlife, understanding population dynamics, appropriate allocation of hunting quotas, hunting revenue, proper evaluation, and careful documentation of CTHP processes and their impacts are urgently required to make CTHP more effective and sustainable.