Communicating to Reduce Conflict Between Humans and Long-Tailed Macaques: A case study from Asahan village, Melaka

Aida Nasirah Abdullah, Kalthom Husain, Mohd Fauzi Kamarudin, Peter Denyer-Simmons, Mehmet Mehmet

Research output: Other contribution to conferencePresentation onlypeer-review

Abstract

Research on human-wildlife coexistence increasingly indicates that all contexts are peculiarly local, and that the involvement of a range of interested stakeholders will tend to improve outcomes for both humans and nonhuman animals. This study carried out in Asahan Village, Melaka, Malaysia looked at longstanding conflicts and disturbances caused by the long-tailed macaque to the humans inhabiting the village. The aim of the study was to listen and attend to the voices of several parties involved in the conflict - the villagers, the long-tailed macaques, the local authorities responsible for the conflict (Melaka Wildlife Department) and NGOs. Interviews were carried out with all human parties involved then analysed thematically and with reference to scholarship on human and non-human animal relations. The preliminary insights from each party suggest very different interests and points of view. The villagers are extremely unhappy with the current state of affairs – including ongoing costs of home modifications to keep monkeys outside, feelings of being under siege by approximately 500 monkeys, and other lifestyle restrictions. When reported to authorities, specific instances of conflict almost always lead the leanly staffed authorities to kill the monkey(s) involved in the conflict. Interestingly and importantly, the villagers and the authorities seldom communicate, and local advocacy on behalf of the monkeys seemed absent. NGOs are not generally consulted, rather their involvement in local decision making is often avoided. Without exchange of views or collective problem solving the longstanding inconveniences and conflicts between long-tailed macaque and villagers will continue. This paper ends with the suggestion that communicating the insights of each party involved in the conflict should be made a priority activity to improve conditions of coexistence for the monkeys and the villagers. Additionally, communicating education in reducing human-wildlife conflicts, changing attitudes of people towards longtailed macaque and increasing public awareness of the value of wildlife and wildlife habitats are essential.
Original languageEnglish
Pages113-114
Number of pages2
Publication statusPublished - 04 Jul 2017
EventAustralia and New Zealand Communication Association (ANZCA) 2017 Annual Conference - University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
Duration: 04 Jul 201707 Jul 2017
http://anzca2017.com/ (Conference website)
http://anzca.net/conferences/past-conferences/2017-conf/p2.html (Conference proceedings)

Conference

ConferenceAustralia and New Zealand Communication Association (ANZCA) 2017 Annual Conference
Abbreviated titleCommunication worlds: Access, voice, diversity, engagement
Country/TerritoryAustralia
CitySydney
Period04/07/1707/07/17
OtherThe Australian and New Zealand Communication Association (ANZCA) brings together researchers, students, and teachers from an expanding array of communication disciplines. Established as the Australian Communication Association in 1980, the trans-Tasman character of the association was formally recognised in 1994. The Association encourages and promotes scholarship in the broad field of communication teaching and research and supports vital forums for communicating research. These include the annual conference and two journals, Communication Research and Practice and Media International Australia.
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