Conservation in the African anthropocene

Tim Caro*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter in a book

5 Citations (Scopus)


ACROSS MOST OF AFRICA, the idea that multiple-use areas can be an effective conservation strategy for large and medium-sized mammals has little merit. Human populations are increasing very rapidly, faster than on any other continent, along with concomitant conversion of wild habitats to agricultural landscapes. Currently, there is a new “scramble for Africa” as governments and foreigners extract resources and many new development and infrastructure projects are being planned or implemented. Several forms of biodiversity have no place in these human-modified landscapes. The aim of this chapter is to demonstrate this for larger mammals and to suggest that we must adhere to and increase our commitment to fully protected areas; they are the best conservation tool at our disposal. I do this using data from a fully protected area in which I have worked for twenty years. My goal here is to counter the idea held by the “new conservationists” that we should direct future efforts toward working landscapes where animals and plants are managed for the benefits of people.Their view of the future of conservation as being “gardening of wildlife” for human benefit contrasts strongly with my original view of conservation in the Anthropocene.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProtecting the Wild
Subtitle of host publicationParks and Wilderness the Foundation for Conservation
PublisherIsland Press-Center for Resource Economics
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)9781610915519
ISBN (Print)9781610915489
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015


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