Pithva, Krishna, & Nishith Dharaiya (2021). Does the contemplation of forest field staff about wildlife differ than a common man? Prithivya: An Official Newsletter of WCB Research Foundation and WCB Research Lab, 1(2), 28-36. (Access: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/354059682_Does_the_contemplation_of_forest_field_staff_about_wildlife_differ_than_a_common_man)

Summary: This study was designed to determine how staff members of a forest service envisage the wildlife in their workplace. Photos of 16 animals were sorted by 18 staff members in terms of their relative liking/disliking of the animals. A principal components analysis (varimax rotation) revealed three attitudes based on (1) economic impact, with animals having a negative economic effect (e.g., the Indian python and cobra) receiving the highest negative scores; (2) aesthetic, spiritual, and conservation value, based on beauty and charisma (cobra, python, and Indian hare); and (3) lack of awareness, based on low knowledge and information (python, Hanuman langur, cobra). The sloth bear and leopard received generally neutral to positive scores across all factors and the wild board received high-negative scores. It was recommended that workshops and training be introduced to increase staff awareness and knowledge of and reduce superstitions about animals within the workplace.

Krishna Pithva <krishnapithva17@gmail.com> is in the Wildlife and Conservation Biology Research Lab, Hemchandracharya North Gujarat University, Pātan (Gujarat), and the Institute of Environment Education and Research, Bharati Vidyapeeth Deemed University, Pune, India. Nishith A Dharaiya <nadharaiya@ngu.ac.in> is in the Department of Life Sciences (Including Environmental Sciences and Microbiology), Hemchandracharya North Gujarat University, Pātan, India.