Human-crocodile conflict in Solomon Islands
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In 2017, following growing public concerns about saltwater crocodile attacks on people, the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change, Disaster Management and Meteorology (MECDM), the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources (MFMR) and WorldFish conducted a nationwide survey to collect detailed information on the extent and characteristics of human-crocodile conflicts. This report summarizes the main findings of the survey. The following sections provide information on the ecology of the species and its cultural significance in Solomon Islands, details on the survey methods, and the main results. In the conclusion, several practical recommendations have been listed for the national government. The Solomon Islands National Biodiversity Strategic Action Plan 2016–2020 identifies the need to develop a management plan for saltwater crocodiles (MECDM 2016: Strategic Goal C, Target 13B I). However, the lack of reliable information on the population status of saltwater crocodiles in the country, and on the occurrence of crocodile attacks on people, has so far hampered this effort. This report aims to address these critical knowledge gaps and contribute to the development of an effective strategy that enables coastal communities to better prevent crocodile attacks.