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Analysing the Geospatial Patterns of Hidden Impacts from Human-Elephant Interactions in the Bunda District, Tanzania
study was conducted in Bunda district, which is a Tanzanian community with high annual incidents of human-elephant interactions, to determine a geographical configuration of hidden impacts. These are indirect impacts and largely unreported adverse effects resulting from human and elephant interactions. These are the effects which usually go unnoticed and unreported due to the lack of visible damage. Spatial analyses of patterns of human-elephant interactions have focused on environmental to socio-economic perspectives rather than spatial aspects of hidden patterns. The study analyzed the distribution, proximity to protected areas, kernel density and hotspots analysis of hidden impacts. The study identified 327 hidden impacts, categorized into the abandonment of farms, marriage problems, delayed school attendances and restriction on movement. It ascertained the highest number of incidents (18.35%) from Kihumbu village and the lowest from Nyangere village (0.01%). Abandonment of farms constituted the largest number (77.4%) while marriage problems formed the lowest number (0.6%) of hidden impacts. The most hidden impacts occurred between 0 and 2000 meters from the boundaries of protected areas. There was a higher concentration of hidden impacts in villages bordering Grumeti Game Reserve than Serengeti National Park. The significant statistical level of adverse hidden impacts occurred in Kihumbu village. Imprecisely execution of tourist hunting operations could presumably be the causing factor for the high concentration of hidden effects nearby Grumeti Game Reserve. However, we recommend a comprehensive study for an intensive understanding of the spatial characteristics of other types of hidden impacts adjacent to protected areas.
Keywords: Bunda district, coldspots, Geographic Information Systems, Grumeti Game Reserve, human-elephant conflicts, hidden impacts,
hotspots, Kernel density, Serengeti National Park, trophy hunting
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