Reducing Illegal Bushmeat Hunting in Tanzania: An Opportunity for The Open University of Tanzania: A Review
Illegal exploitation of wildlife for bushmeat – non-domesticated terrestrial mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians harvested for food and income – is a matter of increasing concern for Africa’s wildlife areas. In Tanzania, the problem is intensifying, and research has already established that wildlife populations across different ecosystems are contracting. A major challenge lies in ensuring sustainability of the remaining wildlife amid pressures from local communities who are constantly trying to work their way out of poverty. In this regard, open and distance learning (ODL) system has an important role to play in promoting conservation through imparting ecological knowledge to a broader community. The present paper highlights options through which The Open University of Tanzania, as an ODL institution, can significantly contribute to controlling bushmeat exploitation from the following perspectives: agricultural development, metapopulations, ecological monitoring, community-based conservation, protein alternatives to bushmeat and conservation enforcement.
Key words: Bushmeat exploitation, wildlife, conservation, Open University of Tanzania