Are sacred caves still safe havens for the endemic bats of Madagascar?

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dc.contributor.author Fernandez-Llamazares, Alvaro
dc.contributor.author Lopez-Baucells, Adria
dc.contributor.author Rocha, Ricardo
dc.contributor.author Andriamitandrina, Santatra F. M.
dc.contributor.author Andriatafika, Zo Emmanuel
dc.contributor.author Burgas, Daniel
dc.contributor.author Temba, Eric Marcel
dc.contributor.author Torrent, Laura
dc.contributor.author Cabeza, Mar
dc.date.accessioned 2018-04-27T10:44:00Z
dc.date.available 2018-04-27T10:44:00Z
dc.date.issued 2018-04
dc.identifier.citation Fernandez-Llamazares , A , Lopez-Baucells , A , Rocha , R , Andriamitandrina , S F M , Andriatafika , Z E , Burgas , D , Temba , E M , Torrent , L & Cabeza , M 2018 , ' Are sacred caves still safe havens for the endemic bats of Madagascar? ' , Oryx , vol. 52 , no. 2 , pp. 271-275 . https://doi.org/10.1017/S0030605317001648
dc.identifier.other PURE: 105438245
dc.identifier.other PURE UUID: d4d4b3bc-b9b2-4292-ac55-7094c23152ea
dc.identifier.other WOS: 000428216300012
dc.identifier.other Scopus: 85044419444
dc.identifier.other ORCID: /0000-0002-7410-7631/work/44189354
dc.identifier.other ORCID: /0000-0002-7813-0222/work/44189495
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10138/234600
dc.description.abstract Despite conservation discourses in Madagascar increasingly emphasizing the role of customary institutions for wildlife management, we know relatively little about their effectiveness. Here, we used semi-structured interviews with 54 adults in eight villages to investigate whether sacred caves and taboos offer conservation benefits for cave-dwelling bats in and around Tsimanampetsotsa National Park, south-west Madagascar. Although some caves were described as sites of spiritual significance for the local communities, most interviewees (c. 76%) did not recognize their present-day sacred status. Similarly, only 22% of the interviewees recognized taboos inhibiting bat hunting and consumption. Legal protection of bats and caves through protected areas was often more widely acknowledged than customary regulations, although up to 30% of the interviewees reported consumption of bats within their communities. Guano extraction was often tolerated in sacred caves in exchange for economic compensation. This may benefit bat conservation by creating incentives for bat protection, although extraction is often performed through destructive and exploitative practices with little benefit for local communities. In view of these results our study questions the extent to which sacred sites, taboos and protected areas offer protection for bats in Madagascar. These results support previous studies documenting the erosion of customary institutions in Madagascar, including the loss of the spiritual values underpinning sacred sites. Given that many Malagasy bats are cave-dwelling species and that most depend on the customary protection of these sites, it is important to obtain a better understanding of the complex interactions between spiritual practices, taboos and protected areas in sustaining bat diversity. en
dc.format.extent 5
dc.language.iso eng
dc.relation.ispartof Oryx
dc.rights cc_by
dc.rights.uri info:eu-repo/semantics/openAccess
dc.subject Bats
dc.subject culture
dc.subject customs
dc.subject fady
dc.subject Madagascar
dc.subject sacred natural sites
dc.subject spiritual values
dc.subject Tsimanampetsotsa National Park
dc.subject CONSERVATION
dc.subject MANAGEMENT
dc.subject SITES
dc.subject 1181 Ecology, evolutionary biology
dc.title Are sacred caves still safe havens for the endemic bats of Madagascar? en
dc.type Article
dc.contributor.organization Helsinki Institute of Sustainability Science (HELSUS)
dc.contributor.organization Organismal and Evolutionary Biology Research Programme
dc.contributor.organization Biosciences
dc.contributor.organization Mar Cabeza-Jaimejuan / Principal Investigator
dc.contributor.organization Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
dc.contributor.organization Global Change and Conservation Lab
dc.description.reviewstatus Peer reviewed
dc.relation.doi https://doi.org/10.1017/S0030605317001648
dc.relation.issn 0030-6053
dc.rights.accesslevel openAccess
dc.type.version publishedVersion

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