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Climate change contributing to conflicts between livestock farming and guanaco conservation in central Chile: a subjective theories approach

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Niki RustORCiD



This is the of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Cambridge University Press, 2021.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


Over the last decade, perceived conflict between guanacos (Lama guanicoe) and ranchers has intensified in Central Chile. This problem stems from perceptions that guanacos compete with livestock for pasture resources. We examined this conservation conflict with a novel approach that considers ranchers’ subjective theories to better understand the origins of the conflict and to identify effective conservation measures based on the participants’ explanations. Results indicate that, for ranchers, the current problem derives from a shift toward increasingly arid weather associated with climate change. We suggest that the conflict is not only linked to resource competition but also symbolises expressing difficulties and negotiating with governmental institutions. This study adds to the literature on human-wildlife conflicts by offering a further dimension to understand the complex ecological and social interactions taking place on livestock farms. We recommend identifying effective, acceptable solutions by considering and understanding the everyday knowledge of the conflict’s protagonists and their potential for change.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Vargas SP, Castro-Carrasco PJ, Rust NA, Riveros JL

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Oryx

Year: 2021

Volume: 55

Issue: 2

Pages: 275-283

Print publication date: 01/03/2021

Online publication date: 06/02/2020

Acceptance date: 15/07/2019

Date deposited: 26/09/2019

ISSN (print): 0030-6053

ISSN (electronic): 1365-3008

Publisher: Cambridge University Press


DOI: 10.1017/S0030605319000838


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