As a final piece to the puzzle of an Invasive Animals CRC funded project, Professor Don Hine (University of Canterbury), Dr Patty Please and Dr Lynette McLeod (University of New England) led a behavioural research project to better understand the barriers as to why some peri-urban residents failed to report on wild dog impacts.
The study, published in the journal Human Dimensions of Wildlife, analysed data from 383 gold coast residents who responded to a random digit dial phone survey that assessed their capability, opportunity and motivation to report wild dogs and their impacts, to local government.
The audience segmentation analysis identified two main types of non-reporters – reluctant and receptive.
The article states that
“Reluctant profile members did not perceive wild dogs to be a threat or perceive any benefits of reporting their presence to the local council. They believed reporting took too much effort, it was cruel to capture and euthanize the dogs and they should be left alone.”
While members of the
“Receptive profile acknowledged wild dogs were a threat, they had a responsibility to assist, and that there were a variety of benefits of reporting the dogs and their impacts to local council such as protecting pets, livestock and wildlife, and creating a safer community.”
The paper outlines a number of strategies local governments could take to move reluctant non-reporters of the community to report, including the ability to make reporting slightly easier through mechanisms such as a toll free number which is promoted via a fridge magnet always visible on your fridge.
They also outlined a number of opportunities to further support and motivate receptive non-reports of the community to report through ensuring they feel confident in identifying a wild dog versus a domestic dog, they have the reporting details close to hand and they receive feedback as to how their report was actioned so they feel their contribution was valued.
This research was undertaken between 2012-2017 as part of the Invasive Animals CRC in partnership with the University of New England, Griffith University and the Gold Coast City Council.
You can view the full paper via the link below:
Donald W. Hine, Lynette J. McLeod & Patricia M. Please (2020) Understanding why peri-urban residents do not report wild dog impacts: an audience segmentation approach, Human Dimensions of Wildlife, DOI: 10.1080/10871209.2020.1735579
Image supplied by John Smith