Anti-Poaching Campaigns--A Tool of Wildlife Law Enforcment?

A survey of Wildlife Law Enforcement Directors throughout the United States was used in assessing the status of anti-poaching campaigns. Thirty-five of the 45 state wildlife agencies returning the questionnaire have an anti-poaching campaign in progress. Personal contact is the medium most frequently used (34 of 35 agencies). Six (17.1%) agencies reported that they had been able to evaluate the effectiveness of their anti-poaching campaigns in eliciting the cooperation of citizens in reporting wildlife violations. Fear of involvement and of being called as a witness was the most frequently cited barrier preventing persons from reporting wildlife violations. A conservationist attitude was cited most frequently as the reason for reporting a violation. Discontinuities seemed apparent in the frequency and percent use of various media in anti-poaching campaigns. The top priority goal of research concerned with developing effective anti-poaching campaigns is one of considering all possible elements of the communication situation.

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