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ALVES, LUIZ C.P.S. et al. Perception of local inhabitants regarding the socioeconomic impact of tourism focused on provisioning wild dolphins in Novo Airão, Central Amazon, Brazil. An. Acad. Bras. Ciênc. [online]. 2013, vol.85, n.4, pp.1577-1591.  Epub Nov 10, 2013. ISSN 0001-3765.

Botos (Inia geoffrensis) are currently provisioned for use in tourist attractions in five sites in the Brazilian Amazon. Despite the known negative effects associated with human-wild dolphin interactions, this activity has been regulated and licensed in the Anavilhanas National Park in Novo Airão, Amazonas State, Brazil. We present an updated evaluation of the perception of the local community concerning the possible socioeconomic impacts of this tourism in Novo Airão. In April 2011, 45 interviews were conducted with inhabitants. A small segment of Novo Airão perceives currently itself as being economically dependent on the botos feeding tourism. Despite that, the economic benefits of this controversial activity apparently are not shared among most inhabitants, and botos feeding tourism is perceived as generating diverse negative effects. We conclude that if the activity was banned or modified into a less impacting tourist activity, this action would probably not majorly affect the lives of the general population.

Keywords : Amazon; Anavilhanas National Park; artificial feeding; boto; Inia geoffrensis.

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