Action: Demarcate and enforce boundaries of protected areas
Key messagesRead our guidance on Key messages before continuing
- We found no evidence for the effects of demarcating and enforcing boundaries of protected areas on primate populations.
'No evidence' for an action means we have not yet found any studies that directly and quantitatively tested this action during our systematic journal and report searches. Therefore we have been unable to assess whether or not the action is effective or has any harmful impacts. Please get in touch if you know of such a study for this action.
Demarcation is the act of creating a boundary around a place, in this case a protected area. To be able to define the spatial limits of important primate habitat to be protected, it is important that the distribution and possibly abundance of the primate species is known (e.g. through survey work). Protected area boundaries can then be demarcated by physical structures, such as fences (not to keep primates in, but to keep people or livestock out), by raising awareness programmes involving communities bordering these boundaries, or by drawing the boundary only on the map. The enforcement of boundaries can be done by maintaining the physical boundary demarcation, boundary patrols by law enforcement guards, and/or continuous education of local people to environmental issues and protection. A correlative study that assessed the impacts of anthropogenic threats on 93 protected areas in 22 tropical countries found that the degree of border demarcation correlated with management effectiveness (Bruner et al. 2001). Another correlative study in northern Congo found that elephant Loxodonta africana and chimpanzee Pan troglodytes troglodytes density decreased with increasing distance outside the NNNP boundary. Chimpanzee density decreased rapidly outside the national park up to a distance of 40 km and increased rapidly inside its boundary. Elephant density within the national park boundary and at short distances up to about 20 km outside its border was relatively stable, but then decreased rapidly with increasing distance away from national park boundary. In contrast, gorilla Gorilla gorilla gorilla density increased with increasing distance outside the park boundary, up to distances of approximately 100 km (Stokes et al. 2010).
Bruner A.G., Gullison R.E., Rice R.E. & da Fonseca G.A.B. (2001) Effectiveness of parks in protecting tropical biodiversity. Science, 291, 125-128.
Stokes E.J., Strindberg S., Bakabana P.C., Elkan P.W., Iyenguet F.C., Madzoke B., Malanda G.A.F., Mowawa B.S., Moukoumbou C., Ouakabadio F.K. & Rainey H.J. (2010) Monitoring great ape and elephant abundance at large spatial scales: measuring effectiveness of a conservation landscape. PLoS ONE, 5, e10294.