Park rangers' behaviors and their effects on tourists and Tibetan macaques (Macaca thibetana) at Mt. Huangshan, China
Department or Administrative Unit
Previous studies have reported the negative impacts of tourism on nonhuman primates (NHPs) and tourists and advocated the improvement of tourism management, yet what constitutes good quality management remains unclear. We explored whether rates of macaque aggression and self-directed behaviors (SDBs) differed under the supervision of two park ranger teams at the Valley of the Wild Monkeys (VWM) in Mt. Huangshan, Anhui Province, China. The two ranger teams provisioned and managed a group of macaques on an alternating monthly basis. Monkey, tourist and ranger behaviors were collected from August 16–September 30, 2012. Macaque aggression and SDB rates did not differ significantly under the management of the two teams. Overall, there was little intervention in tourist-macaque interactions by park rangers, and even when rangers discouraged tourists’ undesirable behaviors, tourist interactions with monkeys persisted. Furthermore, only one or sometimes two park rangers managed monkeys and tourists, and rangers established dominance over the monkeys to control them. In order to effectively manage tourists and monkeys by a single park ranger, we recommend that rangers: (1) prohibit tourists from feeding; (2) move around the viewing platform more frequently; and (3) limit the number of tourists each visiting session.
Usui, R., et al. (2014). Park rangers' behaviors and their effects on tourists and Tibetan macaques (Macaca thibetana) at Mt. Huangshan, China. Animals, 4(3), 546–561. DOI: 10.3390/ani4030546
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