Assessment of demographic characteristics of stakeholders of marketed wildlife species along five highways in south-west Nigeria
Wildlife is an important aspect of biodiversity but human civilization continues to impact negatively on it because hundreds of millions of animals are harvested from the wild and sold for man’s use each year. Therefore, there is need to update the existing knowledge of wildlife stakeholders in marketed wildlife species especially in the Southwest Nigeria, has become imperative. A total of twenty-three (23) games markets along five Roads in South-west Nigeria (Road 1:Ibadan-Ife-Ado-Ekiti, Road 2:Ibadan-Ife-Akure, Road 3: Ibadan- Oyo-Ogbomosho, Road 4: Lagos-Ibadan-Shagamu Interchange and Road 5: Sagamu-Ore or IIA, IID, IIO, LSO and ISI respectively) were visited monthly for two seasons to document the wildlife stakeholders’ details. Two hundred and fifty (250) copies of a structured questionnaire were administered using systematic random sampling (odd) method to obtain demographic information of the respondents including traders, hunters, herbalists, food vendors and artisans. Data generated were subjected to continuous statistics of bar charts for analysis and interpretation. Results revealed that all classes of people were represented in the trade but Road 5 (LSI) had the highest number of females with the people whose ages ranged between 16 and 25 years (6). Road 2 (Ibadan-Ife-Akure, IIA) had the highest number of people with age between 56 years and above. Generally, age-group in this study was ranked in years as 46-55 >36-45 > 26-35 > 56 plus> 16-25. It was recommended that formulation of laws and Regulations to protect wildlife poaching be enacted. Government should also establish more reserves for wildlife conservation and protection of endangered species to stop them from going into extinction through different governmental programmes and policies.
Keywords: Game markets, biodiversity, wildlife, conservation, endangered