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Bird feeding in urban wetlands: assessing the effectiveness of educational messages on attitudes towards feeding. A case study at Sanctuary Lakes

thesis
posted on 2021-01-01, 00:00 authored by Ella Henson
Despite being widely discouraged, feeding of wild birds occurs frequently in Australia. This study explored the associations between normative beliefs and attitudes of people on bird feeding behaviour and examined how four educational messages changed attitudes towards waterbird feeding at Sanctuary Lakes, near Melbourne, Australia (37.8963° S, 144.7616° E). An online survey of nearby residents (n = 206) identified those who have fed waterbirds at Sanctuary Lakes at least once in the past two years (feeders; 22.8%) and those who have not (non-feeders). Participants viewed one of four randomly selected educational messages and were asked to state their level of agreement to two statements; (1) People should be able to feed waterbirds if they want to; (2) It is acceptable to feed waterbirds at Sanctuary Lakes, before and after exposure to these messages. While some messages appeared to evoke a small shift towards the belief that people should not feed waterbirds, no message was unambiguously more effective than any other. Feeders exhibited different social norms around waterbird feeding compared with non-feeders. Results suggest that messages based on bird health and normative beliefs may be effective in discouraging waterbird feeding.

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Pagination

118 p.

Material type

thesis

Resource type

thesis

Language

eng

Degree type

Honours

Degree name

B. Environmental Science (Hons)

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All rights reserved

Editor/Contributor(s)

K Miller Kelly

Faculty

Faculty of Science

School

Engineering and Built Environment

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