There are arguments in support of and against use of tiger farming as a tool for the conservation of wild tigers Panthera tigris. Public attitude toward tiger farming can be a useful reference for tiger conservation. To fill this knowledge gap, we surveyed 677 citizens and 381 college students in Beijing to understand their knowledge of tiger conservation and attitude toward tiger farming. The results of ranking questions showed that with regard to the value of tigers, ecological, cultural and aesthetic, and scientific and educational value were ranked as the top three; legislation on wildlife protection and establishment of nature reserves were ranked as the top conservation methods; and poaching and illegal trade, human disturbance and loss of habitat were ranked as the top threatening factors. Apparently, medicinal and healthcare use as well as value as status symbols can be considered the main consumption motivations that trigger poaching and illegal trade. With regard to farming of tigers and the aspects of whether tigers should be farmed, the number of farmed tigers, how to dispose of farmed tigers and so on, we found that most of respondents considered farming of tigers to be a social undertaking and found it difficult to relate to commercial purposes. The results showed that people hold clear positions on arguments for and against the ban on tiger trade and were inclined to support the ban on trading tiger products, especially college students. We also found that the respondents were more balanced toward arguments in support of the use of farmed tigers than arguments against it.
Z. Liu, Z. Jiang, C. Li1, H. Fang, X. Ping, Z. Luo, S. Tang, L. Li1, Z. Meng & Y. Zeng. (2015) Public attitude toward tiger farming and tiger conservation in Beijing, China. Animal Conservation. doi:10.1111/acv.12181