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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Mixed-breed guarding dogs reduce conflict between goat herders and native carnivores in Patagonia

Published source details

Gonzalez A., Novaro A., Funes M., Pailacura O., Bolgeri M.J. & Walker S. (2012) Mixed-breed guarding dogs reduce conflict between goat herders and native carnivores in Patagonia. Human Wildlife Interactions, 6, 327-334

This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Use guardian animals (e.g. dogs, llamas, donkeys) bonded to livestock to deter predators to reduce human-wildlife conflict Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

A replicated, site comparison study in 2005–2011 on a grass-shrub steppe area in Patagonia, Argentina (González et al. 2012) found that use of dogs Canis lupus familiaris by goat herders to guard livestock reduced the killing of predators by herders. Results were not tested for statistical significance. Six of eight herders with working guard dogs reported that they no longer killed predators, one had never done so and one did so less frequently than previously. Nine herders who did not have working dogs all continued to kill predators. Most reported predation was by cougar Puma concolor and culpeo fox Lycalopex culpaeus. Thirty-seven puppies were placed with herders, of which 11 became successful livestock guarding dogs. Herders were interviewed monthly or bimonthly during the dog training period. Nine neighbouring herders without dogs were also interviewed. Interviews included questions about predator control activities carried out by the herders.

(Summarised by Nick Littlewood)