Hunting and human health- rapid assessment

Since 2004, MAHERY (Madagascar Health and Environmental Research) has been studying the social, economic and geographic drivers of bushmeat (any wildlife used for food) consumption in northeastern Madagascar (the Maroantsetra area). Local people are hunting a variety of mammal species including lemurs, carnivores, bats, bush pigs and tenrecs. We also have done some preliminary modeling of the sustainability of current hunting practices on this array of wildlife and found that much of it is unsustainable. Lemurs and carnivores, because of their slow reproductive life history strategies, are particularly susceptible to unsustainable hunting.

To date, we have worked analyzing the social, economic and geographic drivers of bushmeat consumption and the ecological and health consequences of this consumption in these locations:

1) Makira Natural Park
2) Masoala National Park
3) Betampona Natural Reserve

4) Kianjavato Special Reserve
5) Lac Alaotra
6) Ankarafantsika National Park

It is our plan to continue expanding this network until we have optimized our national coverage.

  1. Golden, D. 2009. Bushmeat hunting and use in the Makira Forest, north-eastern Madagascar: a conservation and livelihoods issue.  Oryx 43: 386-392.
  2. Brashares, J.S., D. Golden, K. Weinbaum, C. B. Barrett and G.V. Okello. 2011. Economic and geographic drivers of wildlife consumption in rural Africa. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, U.S.A. 108:13931-13936.
  3. Golden, C. D., Rabehatonina, A. Rakotosoa, and M. Moore. Socio-ecological analysis of natural resource use in Betampona Strict Natural Reserve. Madagascar Conservation & Development, North America, 9, Nov. 2014. Available at: <>.
  4. Borgerson, C., Johnson, S.E., Louis, E.E., Holmes, S.M., Anjaranirina, E.J.G., Randriamady, H.J., and Golden, C.D. The use of natural resources to improve household income, health, and nutrition within the forests of Kianjavato, Madagascar. Madagascar Conservation & Development 13(1): doi: 10.4314/mcd.v13i1.6
  5. Borgerson, C., Vonona, M. A., Vonona, T., Anjaranirina, E. J. G., Lewis, R., Ralainasolo, F. and Golden, C. D. 201 8. An evaluation of the interactions among household economies, human health, and wildlife hunting in the Lac Alaotra wetland complex of Madagascar. Madagascar Conservation & Development 13(1) doi:10.431 4/mcd.v1 3i1.5