Applying typology analyses to management issues: Deer harvest and declining hunter numbers
Oddgeir Andersen, Hilde K. Wam, Atle Mysterud and Bjørn P. Kaltenborn in The Journal of Wildlife Management
Oddgeir Andersen, Hilde K. Wam, Atle Mysterud and Bjørn P. Kaltenborn
In both North America and Europe, deer populations are increasing and hunter participation is decreasing. This generates concern for our future ability to control deer populations. Information on hunter typologies can help ascertain which licensing regulations are the most useful for either deer population control or activating currently non-active hunters. We used latent class analyses to identify typologies among 1,820 active and non-active red deer hunters in Norway. We found that active hunters could be grouped into mixed visitors (77%), deer enthusiasts (13%), and solitary locals (10%) in regard to their motivation and approach to hunting and landowner acquaintances (47%), less involved locals (40%), and long-term visitors (13%) when considering access to hunting grounds. We found 2 typologies of non-active hunters: likely recruits (79%) and permanently gone (29%). Managers in areas with undesirably dense deer populations should be more flexible in the way hunting is organized and promoted to motivate a diverse group of hunters. We recommend a zone-based management plan based on key factors determining hunter participation, which in our study included location of residence, interest in trophies, willingness to pay, willingness to travel, sociality, landowner relations, and leasing agreements.