Perceived ecosystem services towards the conservation of Agusan Marsh Wildlife Sanctuary in Mindanao, Philippines

Mora-Garcia, C., et al., 2020. International Journal of Conservation Science

Original research (primary data)
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Abstract

Ecosystem services refer to the benefits that are derived from the natural environment. Wetlands such as Agusan marsh are a productive ecosystem that provides various goods and services to the ecological, economic, and social wellbeing of the society. Face-to-face household and key informant interview were done to assess the ecosystem services offered by Agusan Marsh Wildlife Sanctuary. Contingent valuation method (CVM) was used to determine the minimum willingness to accept (WTA) compensation per month of land managers should they agree to conserve part of the AMWS. Provisioning services such as food and water resources were seen as the benefits provided by the marsh to the community living within the marsh, but regulating services were more important for people living in the downstream. Flood control services are the regulatory service that has an impact towards the lower stretches of Agusan river, and too much financial effort has been given to flood control projects in low lying areas. The minimum WTA of farmers and fishers for any land conservation agreement were Php2,144.32 and Php3,442.0, respectively. This amount can be the basis of the decision makers and stakeholders if sustainable financing scheme on ecosystem services management program will be implemented in AMWS.

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