Human response to wildlife management is widespread, encompassing both human–wildlife conflicts and wildlife conservation, in different places and at different times. As people become increasingly aware of the importance of wildlife to biological and environmental sustainability, newspapers can be important sources of information, especially in developing countries, such as Iran. Three major Iranian daily newspapers were analysed for news items related to wildlife. Over the 7-year study period, 434 articles presented environmental news, of which 61 items referred to wildlife. Each wildlife item was recorded in terms of message, contributor, spatiality, and allocated space. Structure query language (SQL) was used to analyse relationships between the 915 fields/entries. Wildlife items were characterised by public awareness (51%), columnist contributions (46%), and local spatiality (43%). Most items (82%) were allocated space of less than half a page. Of the categorised topics, those of combined endangered land (30%) and marine (5%) species exceeded items on global conservation (24%). Results highlighted the minimal number and small space devoted to wildlife news items and their concentrations (67%) in one of the three sampled newspapers. Although nature has historically been important in Iranian culture, current attitudes to wildlife, as reflected in newspaper coverage, do not seem to mirror these traditional perspectives. Given the widespread distribution of newspapers and their roles (i.e., as sources of information and opinion influencers), global wildlife conservation issues would benefit from much greater coverage in the daily press.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Funding: F.A. is grateful for funding from the School of Geography and Environmental Sciences, Ulster University.
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