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Linking Co-Management, Livelihood and Forest Conservation in Protected Area: A Case Study of Wildlife Sanctuary
An exploratory study was conducted in Rema-Kalenga Wildlife Sanctuary (RKWS) which is a biodiversity hotspot zone of north-eastern Bangladesh. The main focus of this study is to assess the effectiveness of alternate income generating activities (AIGAs) provided by the Nishorgo Support Project (NSP or Nishorgo) as a tool for reducing dependence on forest resources by people living in and around RKWS and also play effective role in forest conservation. This study compares the socioeconomic condition (income, living style etc.) and forest dependency before and after implementation of co-management activities in Rema-Kalenga Wildlife Sanctuary. A total of 11 villages (sampling intensity was 31%) namely Kalibari, Mongoliabari, Chokidarbari, Chonbari, kalenga, Krishnochura, Hatimara, Himalia, Rashidpur, Goramchori, Horinmara were studied. We surveyed 272 households in these villages (Incase of households survey, sampling intensity was 100%). Data analysis shows that the major income generating livelihood activities were agro farming (30%), followed by fuelwood collection (22.50%), nursery raising (12.5%), cattle rearing (10%), fisheries (7.50%) and others. Study also reveals that after being implementation of the co management activities the average income levels of the studied villages have rises on 578 Tk/HHs (1US$ = 70 Taka, Taka means Bangladeshi currency). Further more, many of the illegal loggers became forest protector, which make their life more secured. It was also found that peoples of the study villages are now actively engaging in forest management activities and it is the only hope for conservation and restoration of forest resources not only in RKWS but also in other protected area’s of our country.
Biodiversity, Co-management, Alternative income generation, Livelihoods, Forest conservation, Bangladesh.
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