Wild Boar in Flanders, Belgium: (Dis)agreements Between Key Stakeholders on Wild Boar Management Objectives, Actions, and Legal Provisions

  • Caroline Geeraerts (Bijdrager)
  • Anneleen Rutten (Bijdrager)
  • Emma Cartuyvels (Bijdrager)
  • Pieter Verschelde (Bijdrager)
  • Sander Devisscher (Bijdrager)
  • Francis Turkelboom (Bijdrager)
  • Paul Quataert (Bijdrager)
  • Jim Casaer (Bijdrager)



Wild boar (Sus scrofa) reappeared in Flanders, Belgium in 2006 after more than half a century of absence. Besides being a native and highly valued game species in Europe, wild boar are also known to be responsible for car collisions, crop damage, disease transmission, and ecological damage at high densities. The management of wild boar therefore seeks to balance these positive and negative impacts. Given the highly fragmented landscape in Flanders and its multifunctional use, coexistence with wild boar is only possible through integrated management involving relevant stakeholder groups. However, to be successful, this requires that the management objectives, the overall wild boar policy of the Flemish authorities, and management actions are supported by the stakeholders. To assess the support for the current management, we conducted a survey among members of the 3 key stakeholder groups: farmers, hunters, and conservationists. Our survey assessed the importance stakeholders attribute to different management objectives, their support for the current legal provisions, and how desirable the different stakeholder groups considered possible management actions. The potential for conflict index was used to analyze the (dis)agreement between and within stakeholder groups. Reducing or preventing crop damage and the risk for car accidents are indicated as being the most important management objectives by all 3 stakeholder groups. Stakeholder groups differ strongly in their support for the current legal provisions. Those stakeholders that have to implement the legal provisions or are mostly affected by these laws are less supportive than others. The desirability of the possible management actions strongly varied according to the different stakeholder groups. Contrary to other studies, the desirability of a possible management action was hardly influenced by the management objective it tried to achieve.
Datum ter beschikking1-jan.-2021

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