Can Domestication of Wildlife Lead to Conservation? The Economics of Tiger Farming in China
AbstractTigers are a threatened species that might soon disappear in the wild. Not only are tigers threatened by deteriorating and declining habitat, but poachers continue to kill tigers for traditional medicine, decoration pieces and so on. Although international trade in tiger products has been banned since 1987 and domestic trade within China since 1993, tigers continue to be poached and Chinese entrepreneurs have established tiger farms in anticipation of their demise. While China desires to permit sale of tiger products from captive-bred tigers, this is opposed on the grounds that it likely encourages illegal killing. Instead, wildlife conservationists lobby for more spending on anti-poaching and trade-ban enforcement. In this study, a mathematical bioeconomic model is used to investigate the issue. Simulation results indicate that, unless range states are characterized by institutions (rule of law, low corruption) similar to those found in the richest countries, reliance on enforcement alone is insufficient to guarantee survival of wild tigers. Likewise, even though conservation payments could protect wild tigers, the inability to enforce contracts militates against this. Our model indicates that wild tigers can be protected by permitting sale of products from tiger farms, although this likely requires the granting of an exclusive license to sellers. Finally, it is possible to tradeoff enforcement effort and sale of products from captive-bred animals, but such tradeoffs are worsened by deteriorating tiger habitat.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University of Victoria, Department of Economics, Resource Economics and Policy Analysis Research Group in its series Working Papers with number 2009-01.
Length: 37 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2008
Date of revision:
endangered species; extinction; wildlife farming and bioeconomics;
Other versions of this item:
- Abbott, Brant & van Kooten, G. Cornelis, 2011. "Can domestication of wildlife lead to conservation? The economics of tiger farming in China," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(4), pages 721-728, February.
- Abbott, Brant & van Kooten, G. Cornelis, 2010. "Can Domestication Of Wildlife Lead To Conservation? The Economics Of Tiger Farming In China," 2010 Annual Meeting, July 25-27, 2010, Denver, Colorado 61071, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
- Q57 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Ecological Economics
- Q27 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Issues in International Trade
- C61 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Optimization Techniques; Programming Models; Dynamic Analysis
- F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-AGR-2009-01-31 (Agricultural Economics)
- NEP-ALL-2009-01-31 (All new papers)
- NEP-CUL-2009-01-31 (Cultural Economics)
- NEP-ENV-2009-01-31 (Environmental Economics)
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For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (G.C. van Kooten).
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