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1 July 2008 Interpretation Reduces Ecological Impacts of Visitors to World Heritage Site
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Abstract
Minimal-impact interpretation is widely used to reduce the ecological impacts of visitors to protected areas. We tested whether verbal appeals and/or role-model demonstrations of minimal-impact behavior by a trained guide reduced noise, litter, and trampling impacts on hiking trails in a subtropical rainforest. Interpretation did reduce impacts significantly. Different interpretive techniques were more effective for different impacts. The experimental groups were mature, well-educated professionals; interpretation may differ in effectiveness for different visitors. Interpretation by skilled guides can indeed reduce visitor impacts in protected areas, especially if role modeling is combined with verbal appeals.
Carolyn Littlefair and Ralf Buckley "Interpretation Reduces Ecological Impacts of Visitors to World Heritage Site," AMBIO: A Journal of the Human Environment 37(5), (1 July 2008). https://doi.org/10.1579/07-R-393.1
Received: 31 July 2007; Accepted: 1 January 2008; Published: 1 July 2008
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