, Volume 38, Issue 3, pp 463-469
Date: 29 May 2006

Managing an Endangered Asian Bovid in an Australian National Park: The Role and Limitations of Ecological-Economic Models in Decision-Making

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Should north Australia’s extensive populations of feral animals be eradicated for conservation, or exploited as a rare opportunity for Indigenous enterprise in remote regions? We examine options for a herd of banteng, a cattle species endangered in its native Asian range but abundant in Garig Gunak Barlu National Park, an Aboriginal land managed jointly by traditional owners and a conservation agency in the Northern Territory of Australia. We reflect on the paradoxes that arise when trying to deal effectively with such complex and contested issues in natural resource management using decision-support tools (ecological-economic models), by identifying the trade-offs inherent in protecting values whilst also providing incomes for Indigenous landowners.