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Case Studies (332)

Tuesday, 26 May 2020 10:50

Livestock-game farming regime shift

Written by Therezah Achieng

Livestock-game farming regime shift

Main Contributors:

Therezah Achieng

Other Contributors:

Kristi Maciejewski, Reinette (Oonsie) Biggs, Michelle Dyer

Summary

The trend of land use changing from livestock farming to game farming in the Eastern Cape has been on the rise since the 1980s (Lloyd et al., 2002), and has major implications for biodiversity and a wide variety of ecosystem services and human wellbeing (Sun & Müller, 2014). The growth in game farming was boosted by free market policies and renewed conservation interests in the 1970s, coupled with the introduction of stock reduction schemes after the prolonged drought of the 1960s, which lowered cattle prices (Smith & Wilson, 2002). Prior to converting into game farms, land use in Amakhala game reserve in the Eastern Cape was predominantly agrarian, including chicory and maize farming, livestock farms and different forms of subsistence farming. Large portions of land were used for commercial livestock farming, mostly stocked with sheep and goat. Farmworkers and farm dwellers were able to move about the land and formed a community; that is, they interacted and shared residential areas, social and cultural activity spaces on the livestock farms. However, these interactions changed with the erection of fences to farm game animals, and the relocation of farm workers to nearby towns and centres. The nature of social relations also changed and the concept of a ‘community’ on the game farms took on very different characteristics. The current land use (game farming), has been reorganized into new structures and functions that accommodate tourism industry (construction of lodges and tourist facilities) and maximize profit. This reconfiguration had ecological, social, economic and cultural implications on human wellbeing.   One way in which this regime shift has been interpreted is that; livestock farming was more about people on the inside (farmers and dwellers), while game farming is seen to be more about people on the outside (visitors).

Type of regime shift

  • Livestock farming to game farming

Ecosystem type

  • Agro-ecosystems

Land uses

  • Small-scale subsistence crop cultivation
  • Intensive livestock production (eg feedlots, dairies)
  • Extensive livestock production (natural rangelands)
  • Conservation
  • Tourism

Spatial scale of the case study

  • Local/landscape (e.g. lake, catchment, community)

Continent or Ocean

  • Africa

Region

  • Southern Africa

Countries

  • South Africa

Locate with Google Map

Drivers

Key direct drivers

  • Environmental shocks (eg floods)

Land use

  • Small-scale subsistence crop cultivation
  • Intensive livestock production (eg feedlots)
  • Extensive livestock production (rangelands)
  • Conservation
  • Tourism

Impacts

Ecosystem type

  • Agro-ecosystems

Biodiversity

  • Biodiversity

Provisioning services

  • Freshwater
  • Food crops
  • Livestock
  • Wild animal and plant products
  • Woodfuel

Cultural services

  • Recreation

Human Well-being

  • Food and nutrition
  • Livelihoods and economic activity
  • Security of housing & infrastructure
  • Cultural, aesthetic and recreational values
  • Cultural identity
  • Social conflict

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

  • Good health and well-being
  • Gender equality
  • Decent work and economic growth

Key Attributes

Spatial scale of RS

  • Local/landscape

Time scale of RS

  • Years
  • Decades

Reversibility

  • Hysteretic

Evidence

  • Contemporary observations

Confidence: Existence of RS

  • Contested – Reasonable evidence both for and against the existence of RS

Confidence: Mechanism underlying RS

  • Well established – Wide agreement on the underlying mechanism

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Key References

  1. Acheampong, K. 2015. South Africa ’ s Eastern Cape Province tourism space economy : a system of palimpsest. African Journal of Hospitality, Tourism and Leisure. 4(Special edition):1–18.
  2. Achieng, T. 2018. Investigating land use change in the Eastern Cape as a regime shift , a case study of Amakhala game reserve . Stellenbosch University.
  3. Achieng, T., Maciejewski, K., Dyer, M. & Biggs, R. 2020. Using a Social-ecological Regime Shift Approach to Understand the Transition from Livestock to Game. Land. 9(97):13.
  4. Brandt, F. & Spierenburg, M. 2014. Game fences in the Karoo: Reconfiguring spatial and social relations. Journal of Contemporary African Studies. 32(2):220–237.
  5. Crépin, A.S., Biggs, R., Polasky, S., Troell, M. & de Zeeuw, A. 2012. Regime shifts and management. Ecological Economics. 84:15–22.
  6. Eastern Cape Parks and Tourism Agency. 2018. Annul Report 2017/18: Predetermined Objectives.
  7. Jones, B.T.B., Stolton, S. & Dudley, N. 2005. Private protected areas in East and southern Africa: contributing to biodiversity conservation and rural development. Parks. 15(2):67–77.
  8. Knudsen, K. & Wærness, K. 2008. National Context and Spouses ’ Housework in 34 Countries. European Sociological Review. 24(1):97–113.
  9. Lloyd, J.W., van den Berg, E.. & Palmer, A.. 2002. Patterns of transformation and degradation in the Thicket Biome, South Africa. Terrestrial Ecology Research unit. (39):1–88.
  10. Maciejewski, K. & Kerley, G.I.H. 2014. Understanding tourists’ preference for mammal species in private protected areas: Is there a case for extralimital species for ecotourism? PLoS ONE. 9(2).
  11. Maciejewski, K. 2012. Exploring the linkages between biodiversity conservation and ecotourism in protected areas. Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University.
  12. Smith, N. & Wilson, S.L. 2002. Changing land use trends in the Thicket Biome: pastoralism to game farming.
  13. Sun, Z. & Müller, D. 2014. Understanding regime shift in land systems with system dynamics. Proceedings - 7th International Congress on Environmental Modelling and Software: Bold Visions for Environmental Modeling, iEMSs 2014. 4:1921–1928.
  14. World Economic Forum. 2015. The Global Gender Gap Report 2015.

Citation

Therezah Achieng, Kristi Maciejewski, Reinette (Oonsie) Biggs, Michelle Dyer. Livestock-game farming regime shift. In: Regime Shifts Database, www.regimeshifts.org. Last revised 2021-03-19 12:44:55 GMT.

Bimodal agrarian system to trimodal agrarian system

Main Contributors:

Nyasha Magadzire

Other Contributors:

Therezah Achieng, Linda Luvuno

Summary

In 2000 the Zimbabwean government initiated the Fast Track Land Reform program which sought to address historical injustices and racial imbalances in the ownership of land stemming from the colonial era (Moyo, 2011a). Under the Fast Track Land Reform program, over 10 million hectares of land were redistributed amongst 146 000 smallholder farm families and 23 000 medium-scale farms (Scoones, Mavedzenge, Murimbarimba & Sukume, 2018), with the small holder farms (A1 resettlements) and medium scale farms (A2 resettlements), averaging a size of 6ha and 10-300ha, respectively (Muchetu, 2019).  The Land Reform Program resulted in a dramatic shift in agrarian structure where a bi-modal system of 6000 large scale commercial farms and over one million communal small-scale peasant farms were transformed into a trimodal agrarian structure of small, medium and large farms (Moyo, 2009; Scoones et al., 2018). This restructuring of the Zimbabwean agrarian system presents ongoing socio-economic and ecological implication. The reconfiguration of Zimbabwe`s agrarian structure shifted agricultural production from exports to diverse food crops. The shift in agrarian structure enhanced the livelihoods of the resettled farmers as they now had access to quality land and opportunities to engage in off-farm activities. The establishment of new farmers on redistributed land had ecological implications such as deforestation and decreased land for wild carnivores.

Type of regime shift

  • Bimodal agrarian system to trimodal agrarian system

Ecosystem type

  • Agro-ecosystems

Land uses

  • Small-scale subsistence crop cultivation
  • Large-scale commercial crop cultivation

Spatial scale of the case study

  • Sub-continental/regional (e.g. southern Africa, Amazon basin)

Continent or Ocean

  • Africa

Region

  • Southern Africa

Countries

  • Zimbabwe

Locate with Google Map

Drivers

Key direct drivers

  • Environmental shocks (eg floods)

Land use

  • Small-scale subsistence crop cultivation
  • Intensive livestock production (eg feedlots)
  • Extensive livestock production (rangelands)
  • Conservation
  • Tourism

Impacts

Ecosystem type

  • Agro-ecosystems

Biodiversity

  • Biodiversity

Provisioning services

  • Freshwater
  • Food crops
  • Livestock
  • Wild animal and plant products
  • Woodfuel

Cultural services

  • Recreation

Human Well-being

  • Food and nutrition
  • Livelihoods and economic activity
  • Security of housing & infrastructure
  • Cultural, aesthetic and recreational values
  • Cultural identity
  • Social conflict

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

  • Good health and well-being
  • Gender equality
  • Decent work and economic growth

Key Attributes

Spatial scale of RS

  • Local/landscape

Time scale of RS

  • Years
  • Decades

Reversibility

  • Hysteretic

Evidence

  • Contemporary observations

Confidence: Existence of RS

  • Contested – Reasonable evidence both for and against the existence of RS

Confidence: Mechanism underlying RS

  • Well established – Wide agreement on the underlying mechanism

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Key References

  1. Magadzire N, Achieng T & Luvuno L. 2020. Changing agrarian structure in Zimbabwe.

Citation

Nyasha Magadzire, Therezah Achieng, Linda Luvuno. Bimodal agrarian system to trimodal agrarian system. In: Regime Shifts Database, www.regimeshifts.org. Last revised 2021-03-19 12:47:29 GMT.

American chestnut dominant forests to red maple dominant forests

Main Contributors:

Ross Shackleton

Other Contributors:

Brendon Larson, Reinette (Oonsie) Biggs

Summary

The eastern parts of the USA were once dominated by American chestnut tree forests (Castanea dentata), making up 40-85 % of canopy cover. However, an invasive alien fungus known as chestnut blight (Cryphonectria parasitica) was accidently introduced to New York in the early 1900s at a time of significantly increased global trade. American chestnut trees had no resistance to this Asian fungus and it spread rapidly across the eastern coast. By the 1930s it had reached the southern Application forests in Virginia and North Carolina and killed almost all chestnut trees in the area (Anagnostikas, 1982; Freinkel, 2007). It continued to spread further into South Carolina and Georgia. By the mid-1950s over 3.6 million hectares of chestnuts trees, almost the entire population, were dead or dying (Anagnostikas, 1987). Only about 1 % of chestnuts now remain, mainly as small coppiced shrubs.

 

The loss of chestnut trees in the USA had significant negative impacts on the supply of timber, tannins, fodder and food products, negatively impacting the livelihoods of foresters and local communities as well and native biodiversity and ecosystem functioning (Freinkel, 2007). It resulted in the loss of a key food and shelter sources for wild animals in the region and altered nutrient cycles (Smock and McGregor, 1988; Ellison et al. 2005). For up to 50 years many forests in the eastern US had large gaps.

 

Hickory filled in these gaps over time and became the dominant forest species (McCormick and Platt, 1980). Due to exclusion of fire in the mid to late 1900s, red maple outcompeted hickory and is now the dominate forest species in the Appellation area.

 

Historically a number of techniques have been used to try and manage chestnut blight invasion, but the majority have failed. This included spaying of fungicide that did not work, and the use of biological control that had limited success. More recently genetic modification and breeding techniques are being implemented to produce chestnut blight resistant strains of C. dentate (Milgroom and Cortesi, 2004; Jacobs, 2007). Replanting of resistant strains into native forests has begun recently.

Type of regime shift

  • Invasive alien species

Ecosystem type

  • Temperate & Boreal Forests

Land uses

  • Urban
  • Small-scale subsistence crop cultivation
  • Large-scale commercial crop cultivation
  • Intensive livestock production (eg feedlots, dairies)
  • Extensive livestock production (natural rangelands)
  • Timber production
  • Conservation
  • Tourism

Spatial scale of the case study

  • Sub-continental/regional (e.g. southern Africa, Amazon basin)

Continent or Ocean

  • North America

Region

  • East coase of the USA

Countries

  • United States

Locate with Google Map

Drivers

Key direct drivers

  • Environmental shocks (eg floods)

Land use

  • Small-scale subsistence crop cultivation
  • Intensive livestock production (eg feedlots)
  • Extensive livestock production (rangelands)
  • Conservation
  • Tourism

Impacts

Ecosystem type

  • Agro-ecosystems

Biodiversity

  • Biodiversity

Provisioning services

  • Freshwater
  • Food crops
  • Livestock
  • Wild animal and plant products
  • Woodfuel

Cultural services

  • Recreation

Human Well-being

  • Food and nutrition
  • Livelihoods and economic activity
  • Security of housing & infrastructure
  • Cultural, aesthetic and recreational values
  • Cultural identity
  • Social conflict

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

  • Good health and well-being
  • Gender equality
  • Decent work and economic growth

Key Attributes

Spatial scale of RS

  • Local/landscape

Time scale of RS

  • Years
  • Decades

Reversibility

  • Hysteretic

Evidence

  • Contemporary observations

Confidence: Existence of RS

  • Contested – Reasonable evidence both for and against the existence of RS

Confidence: Mechanism underlying RS

  • Well established – Wide agreement on the underlying mechanism

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Key References

  1. Anagnostakis SL. 1982. Biological control of chestnut blight. Science, 466-471.
  2. Anagnostakis SL. 1987.Chestnut blight: The classical problem of an introduced pathogen. Mycologia 79, 23-37.
  3. Diskin M, Steiner KC, Herbard FV, Recovery of American chestnut characteristics following hybridization and backcross breeding to restore blight-ravaged Castanea dentate. Forest Ecology and Management 223, 439-447.
  4. Ellison AM et al. 2005. Loss of foundation species: consequences for the structure and dynamics of forested ecosystems. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 3, 479-486.
  5. Freinkel S. 2007. American chestnut: the life, death and rebirth of a perfect tree. University of California Press.
  6. Jacobs DF. 2007. Towards development of silvical strategies for forest restoration of American chestnut (Castanea dentata) using blight-resistant hybrids. Biological Conservation 137, 497-506.
  7. Loo JA. 2009. Ecological impacts of non-indigenous invasive fungi as forest pathogens. Biological Invasions 11, 81-96.
  8. McCormick JF, Platt RB. 1980. Recovery of an Appalachian forest following the chestnut blight or Caherine Keever – you were right! The American Midland Naturalist 104, 264-273.
  9. Milgroom MG, Cortesi P. 2004. Biological control of chestnut blight with hypovirulence: a critical analysis. Annual review of Phytopathology 42, 311-338.
  10. Paillet FL. 2002. Chestnut: history and ecology of a transformed species. Journal of Biogeography 29, 1517-1530
  11. Smock LA, MacGregor CM. 1988. Impact of the American chestnut blight on aquatic shredding macroinvertibrates, Journal of the North American Benthological Society 7, 212-221.

Citation

Ross Shackleton, Brendon Larson, Reinette (Oonsie) Biggs. American chestnut dominant forests to red maple dominant forests. In: Regime Shifts Database, www.regimeshifts.org. Last revised 2018-01-26 12:03:01 GMT.
Monday, 16 October 2017 08:46

Primary Production in the Arctic Ocean

Written by Juan Carlos

Primary Production in the Arctic Ocean

Main Contributors:

Patricia Villarrubia Gomez, Helene Albinus Søgaard, Karl Samuelsson, Sophie Laggan

Other Contributors:

Thorsten Blenckner

Summary

 A shift from polar to temperate primary production (PP) patterns has been detected in the Arctic Ocean. Following a regime shift in the North Atlantic in 1995, similar structural changes are now occurring in Arctic waters. Rapid warming of atmospheric and oceanic temperatures has caused a near year-on-year decline in the extent and thickness of summer sea ice since 1979 (NSIDC 2014). Anthropogenic climatic change has extended the growing season and delayed August freeze-up through a decline in albedo reflectivity and enhanced wind-driven vertical mixing. Natural modes of variability at the lower latitudes has also led to poleward shifts of temperate marine species and caused pronounced phenological changes to primary producers. The difference in the temporal scale of these forcing mechanisms makes it hard to predict which event is causing changes to PP. It is uncertain what impact this change will have on the food web of this ecosystem.

Type of regime shift

Ecosystem type

  • Marine & coastal
  • Rock and Ice

Land uses

  • Fisheries

Spatial scale of the case study

  • Sub-continental/regional (e.g. southern Africa, Amazon basin)

Continent or Ocean

  • Arctic Ocean

Region

  • Arctic ocean

Countries

  • Norway
  • United Kingdom
  • Canada
  • Iceland

Locate with Google Map

Drivers

Key direct drivers

  • Environmental shocks (eg floods)

Land use

  • Small-scale subsistence crop cultivation
  • Intensive livestock production (eg feedlots)
  • Extensive livestock production (rangelands)
  • Conservation
  • Tourism

Impacts

Ecosystem type

  • Agro-ecosystems

Biodiversity

  • Biodiversity

Provisioning services

  • Freshwater
  • Food crops
  • Livestock
  • Wild animal and plant products
  • Woodfuel

Cultural services

  • Recreation

Human Well-being

  • Food and nutrition
  • Livelihoods and economic activity
  • Security of housing & infrastructure
  • Cultural, aesthetic and recreational values
  • Cultural identity
  • Social conflict

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

  • Good health and well-being
  • Gender equality
  • Decent work and economic growth

Key Attributes

Spatial scale of RS

  • Local/landscape

Time scale of RS

  • Years
  • Decades

Reversibility

  • Hysteretic

Evidence

  • Contemporary observations

Confidence: Existence of RS

  • Contested – Reasonable evidence both for and against the existence of RS

Confidence: Mechanism underlying RS

  • Well established – Wide agreement on the underlying mechanism

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

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Citation

Patricia Villarrubia Gomez, Helene Albinus Søgaard, Karl Samuelsson, Sophie Laggan, Thorsten Blenckner. Primary Production in the Arctic Ocean. In: Regime Shifts Database, www.regimeshifts.org. Last revised 2017-10-16 18:30:40 GMT.
Monday, 16 October 2017 08:12

Arctic Benthos Borealisation

Written by Juan Carlos

Arctic Benthos Borealisation

Main Contributors:

Sara Andersson, Noah Linder, Katharina Fryers Hellquist, Linn Järnberg

Other Contributors:

Thorsten Blenckner, Juan Carlos Rocha

Summary

A regime shift occurred on the west coast of Svalbard in 1996 and 2000; the former Arctic benthos was mainly constituted by red calcareous algae and filter feeders whereas the present subarctic benthos is dominated by macroalgae. The main drivers of this shift are increases in sea surface temperature and inflow of light that are both due to global warming and changes in the North Atlantic Oscillation. Changes in benthos could impact other trophic levels, potentially affecting commercial fisheries as well as tourism. The implications for ecosystem services and human well-being are highly uncertain. Management options are mainly to reduce greenhouse gases to combat global warming and an adaptive management approach is also proposed on a local scale. 

Type of regime shift

Ecosystem type

  • Marine & coastal
  • Rock and Ice

Land uses

  • Fisheries
  • Tourism

Spatial scale of the case study

  • Local/landscape (e.g. lake, catchment, community)

Continent or Ocean

  • Arctic Ocean

Region

  • Svalvard

Countries

  • Svalbard

Locate with Google Map

Drivers

Key direct drivers

  • Environmental shocks (eg floods)

Land use

  • Small-scale subsistence crop cultivation
  • Intensive livestock production (eg feedlots)
  • Extensive livestock production (rangelands)
  • Conservation
  • Tourism

Impacts

Ecosystem type

  • Agro-ecosystems

Biodiversity

  • Biodiversity

Provisioning services

  • Freshwater
  • Food crops
  • Livestock
  • Wild animal and plant products
  • Woodfuel

Cultural services

  • Recreation

Human Well-being

  • Food and nutrition
  • Livelihoods and economic activity
  • Security of housing & infrastructure
  • Cultural, aesthetic and recreational values
  • Cultural identity
  • Social conflict

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

  • Good health and well-being
  • Gender equality
  • Decent work and economic growth

Key Attributes

Spatial scale of RS

  • Local/landscape

Time scale of RS

  • Years
  • Decades

Reversibility

  • Hysteretic

Evidence

  • Contemporary observations

Confidence: Existence of RS

  • Contested – Reasonable evidence both for and against the existence of RS

Confidence: Mechanism underlying RS

  • Well established – Wide agreement on the underlying mechanism

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Key References

  1. Holling, C. S. 1978. Adaptive Enviromental Assessment and Management. New York: John Wiley & Sons.
  2. Beuchel, Frank, Bjørn Gulliksen, and Michael L. Carroll. 2006. “Long-Term Patterns of Rocky Bottom Macrobenthic Community Structure in an Arctic Fjord (Kongsfjorden, Svalbard) in Relation to Climate Variability (1980–2003).” Journal of Marine Systems 63(1-2):35–48.
  3. Bischoff, B., and C. Wiencke. 1993. “Temperature Requirements for Growth and Survival of Macroalgae from Disko Island (Greenland).” Helgoländer Meeresuntersuchungen 47(2):167–91.
  4. Drinkwater, Kenneth F. 2006. “The Regime Shift of the 1920s and 1930s in the North Atlantic.” Progress in Oceanography 68(2-4):134–51.
  5. Grebmeier, Jacqueline M. et al. 2006. “A Major Ecosystem Shift in the Northern Bering Sea.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 311(5766):1461–64.
  6. IPCC. 2013. Climate Change 2013: The Physical Science Basis. Cambridge, United Kingdom andNew York, NY, USA: Cambridge University Press.
  7. Johansen, H. W. 1981. Coralline Algae, A First Synthesis. CRC Press.
  8. Johansen, H. W. 1981. Coralline Algae, A First Synthesis. CRC Press. Kortsch, Susanne et al. 2012. “Climate-Driven Regime Shifts in Arctic Marine Benthos.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 109(35):14052–57. Snelgrove, Paul V. R. 1999. “Getting to the Bottom of Marine Biodiversity : Sedimentary Habitats Ocean Bottoms Are the Most Widespread Habitat on Earth and Support High Biodiversity and Key Ecosystem Services.” BioScience 49(2):129–38. Viken, Arvid. 2010. “Tourism, Research, and Governance on Svalbard: A Symbiotic Relationship.” Polar Record 47(04):335–47. Weslawski, Jan M. et al. 2011. “Climate Change Effects on Arctic Fjord and Coastal Macrobenthic Diversity—observations and Predictions.” Marine Biodiversity 41(1):71–85.
  9. Kortsch, Susanne et al. 2012. “Climate-Driven Regime Shifts in Arctic Marine Benthos.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 109(35):14052–57.
  10. Snelgrove, Paul V. R. 1999. “Getting to the Bottom of Marine Biodiversity : Sedimentary Habitats Ocean Bottoms Are the Most Widespread Habitat on Earth and Support High Biodiversity and Key Ecosystem Services.” BioScience 49(2):129–38. Viken, Arvid. 2010. “Tourism, Research, and Governance on Svalbard: A Symbiotic Relationship.” Polar Record 47(04):335–47.
  11. Snelgrove, Paul V. R. 1999. “Getting to the Bottom of Marine Biodiversity : Sedimentary Habitats Ocean Bottoms Are the Most Widespread Habitat on Earth and Support High Biodiversity and Key Ecosystem Services.” BioScience 49(2):129–38. Viken, Arvid. 2010. “Tourism, Research, and Governance on Svalbard: A Symbiotic Relationship.” Polar Record 47(04):335–47. Weslawski, Jan M. et al. 2011. “Climate Change Effects on Arctic Fjord and Coastal Macrobenthic Diversity—observations and Predictions.” Marine Biodiversity 41(1):71–85.
  12. Weslawski, Jan M. et al. 2011. “Climate Change Effects on Arctic Fjord and Coastal Macrobenthic Diversity—observations and Predictions.” Marine Biodiversity 41(1):71–85.

Citation

Sara Andersson, Noah Linder, Katharina Fryers Hellquist, Linn Järnberg, Thorsten Blenckner, Juan Carlos Rocha. Arctic Benthos Borealisation. In: Regime Shifts Database, www.regimeshifts.org. Last revised 2017-10-16 18:30:19 GMT.

Invasive floating to submerged plant dominance in South Africa

Main Contributors:

Emily Strange

Other Contributors:

Julie Coetzee, Reinette (Oonsie) Biggs

Summary

As naturally occurring large bodies of freshwater are rare in South Africa there are numerous man-made dams and lakes, these systems are highly vulnerable to colonization from non-native invasive plants due to multiple factors. Firstly, there is a lack of native aquatic plant species to occupy the water column and compete for resources. Secondly they are often eutrophic systems, caused by anthropogenic activity such as intensive agriculture and improper human waste disposal, and nutrient loading is a known driver of invasive plants. Also, it has been argued that the intrinsic nature of freshwater systems leads them to be disproportionately affected by non native invasive species when compared with terrestrial systems (Moorhouse and McDonald 2015).

This combination has lead to a long battle against floating invasive plants that dominate many of South Africa’s freshwater resources.. These plants form dense mats on the waters surface, restricting light to other species, damaging hydroelectric equipment, limiting water quality and reducing biodiversity. They can also play host to vectors of disease such as malari and schistosomiasis (Mack and Smith, 2011). The implementation of classical biological control programs, using the natural enemies of the invasive plants, has proven to be a huge success when controlling detrimental invasive plants such as water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes), water lettuce (Pistia stratiotes L. (Araceae)), Kariba weed (Salvinia molesta D.S. Mitchell (Salviniaceae)), parrots feather (Myriophyllum aquaticum (Vellozo Conceição) Verdcourt) and red water fern (Azolla filiculoides Lamarck (Azollaceae)) (Hill 2002)

The host-specific biological control agents (BCAs), typically insects and mites, have coevolved with the plants in their natural range and are intentionally introduced to manage invasive plant populations.

The overall aim of this is to induce a regime shift into a functioning system with high native biodiversity and freshwater access. However, we propose that whilst the BCAs do lead to a dramatic reduction in the biomass and health of the floating plant, it can also act as a catalyst inducing a shift into a second degraded stable regime. This second regime is one that is dominated by submerged invasive plants. The establishment of the BCAs on the floating plants can lead to a rapid plant population crash and the nutrients they were locking up are released. At the same time submerged light levels are restored in the water column, enabling a new suite of submerged invasive plants to flourish. The increase in space, light and nutrients promotes the submerged plant growth and as they continue to photosynthesize the levels of dissolved oxygen in the water rise. This improvement in water quality, alongside a limited number of native submerged plants to compete with, helps to establish and maintain this second stable regime (invasive submerged plant dominance). These rooted plants can alter water flow, turbidity and sediment stabilization (Yarrow et al. 2009). They can also degrade water quality and biodiversity, restrict access to freshwater and damage hydro-electrical equipment.

Type of regime shift

Ecosystem type

  • Freshwater lakes & rivers

Land uses

  • Urban
  • Small-scale subsistence crop cultivation
  • Large-scale commercial crop cultivation
  • Intensive livestock production (eg feedlots, dairies)
  • Extensive livestock production (natural rangelands)
  • Conservation
  • Tourism

Spatial scale of the case study

  • Local/landscape (e.g. lake, catchment, community)

Continent or Ocean

  • Africa

Region

  • South Africa

Countries

  • South Africa

Locate with Google Map

Drivers

Key direct drivers

  • Environmental shocks (eg floods)

Land use

  • Small-scale subsistence crop cultivation
  • Intensive livestock production (eg feedlots)
  • Extensive livestock production (rangelands)
  • Conservation
  • Tourism

Impacts

Ecosystem type

  • Agro-ecosystems

Biodiversity

  • Biodiversity

Provisioning services

  • Freshwater
  • Food crops
  • Livestock
  • Wild animal and plant products
  • Woodfuel

Cultural services

  • Recreation

Human Well-being

  • Food and nutrition
  • Livelihoods and economic activity
  • Security of housing & infrastructure
  • Cultural, aesthetic and recreational values
  • Cultural identity
  • Social conflict

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

  • Good health and well-being
  • Gender equality
  • Decent work and economic growth

Key Attributes

Spatial scale of RS

  • Local/landscape

Time scale of RS

  • Years
  • Decades

Reversibility

  • Hysteretic

Evidence

  • Contemporary observations

Confidence: Existence of RS

  • Contested – Reasonable evidence both for and against the existence of RS

Confidence: Mechanism underlying RS

  • Well established – Wide agreement on the underlying mechanism

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Key References

  1. Charles H & Dukes JS. 2007. Impacts of invasive species on ecosystem services. Biological Invasions; Ecological Studies 193.
  2. Coetzee et al. 2011 Prospects for the biological control of submerged macrophytes in South Africa. African Entomology : Biological control of invasive alien plants in South Africa (1999 - 2010): Special Issue 2.
  3. Coetzee J & Hill MP. 2012. The role of eutrophication in the biological control of water hyacinth, Eichhornia crassipes, in South Africa. BioControl 57, 247-261.
  4. Hill MP. 2002. The impact and control of alien aquatic vegetation in South African aquatic ecosystems. African Journal of Aquatic Science 28, 19-24
  5. Mack RN & Smith MC. 2011. Invasive plants as catylsts for the spread of human parasites. NeoBiota 9, 13-29.
  6. Martin GD & Coetzee JA. 2011. Pet stores, aquarists and the internet trade as modes of introduction and spread of invasive macrophytes in South Africa. Water SA [online] 37, pp. 371-380. ISSN 0378-4738
  7. McConnachie J, de Wit, MP, Hill MP, Byrne MJ. Economic evaluation of the successful biological control of Azolla filiculoides in South Africa, Biological Control, 28 (1) ISSN 1049-9644.
  8. Moorhouse and McDonald. 2015. Are invasives worse in freshwater than terrestrial ecosystems? Wiley Periodicals
  9. Strange, E. F., Hill, J. M., & Coetzee, J. A. (2018). Evidence for a new regime shift between floating and submerged invasive plant dominance in South Africa. Hydrobiologia, 817(1), 349-362.
  10. Strange, E. F., Landi, P., Hill, J. M., & Coetzee, J. A. (2019). Modeling top-down and bottom-up drivers of a regime shift in invasive aquatic plant stable states. Frontiers in plant science, 10, 889.
  11. Yarrow M, Marin VH, Finlayson M, Tironi A, Delgado LE & Fishcher F. 2009. The ecology of Egeria densa Planchon (Liliopsida: Alismatales): A wetland ecosystem engineer? Revista Chilena de Historia Natural 82, 299-313.

Citation

Emily Strange, Julie Coetzee, Reinette (Oonsie) Biggs. Invasive floating to submerged plant dominance in South Africa. In: Regime Shifts Database, www.regimeshifts.org. Last revised 2018-01-17 14:16:54 GMT.

Megadiverse fynbos shrublands to invasive wattle tree monoculture

Main Contributors:

Ross Shackleton

Other Contributors:

Dave Richardson, Reinette (Oonsie) Biggs

Summary

The southwestern tip of Africa is home to the Fynbos biome (Cape Floristic Region), which is characterised by highly diverse plant groups, many of which are endemic and occur nowhere else in the world. Numerous species of Australian acacia (wattles) were introduced to South Africa for multiple reasons, including sand/dune stabilisation, ornamental purposes, and forestry. Many species have subsequently naturalised and some are widespread invaders. The Australian wattles have filled an empty niche (trees in a virtually treeless system) causing a regime shift. This shift has induced many negative impacts to the social-ecological system in the area. These include alterations to fire and hydrological systems, changes in soil nutrient cycles, biodiversity loss, and negative impacts on local livelihoods and human well-being through loss of grazing, water supply, ecotourism and increased exposure to natural hazards. Ongoing management interventions include mechanical and chemical control and the use of biological control agents.

Type of regime shift

  • Introduction of aline species (Biological invasions)

Ecosystem type

  • Mediterranean shrubs (egFynbos)

Land uses

  • Urban
  • Small-scale subsistence crop cultivation
  • Large-scale commercial crop cultivation
  • Extensive livestock production (natural rangelands)
  • Timber production
  • Conservation
  • Tourism

Spatial scale of the case study

  • Local/landscape (e.g. lake, catchment, community)

Continent or Ocean

  • Africa

Region

  • Western Cape, South Africa

Countries

  • South Africa

Locate with Google Map

Drivers

Key direct drivers

  • Environmental shocks (eg floods)

Land use

  • Small-scale subsistence crop cultivation
  • Intensive livestock production (eg feedlots)
  • Extensive livestock production (rangelands)
  • Conservation
  • Tourism

Impacts

Ecosystem type

  • Agro-ecosystems

Biodiversity

  • Biodiversity

Provisioning services

  • Freshwater
  • Food crops
  • Livestock
  • Wild animal and plant products
  • Woodfuel

Cultural services

  • Recreation

Human Well-being

  • Food and nutrition
  • Livelihoods and economic activity
  • Security of housing & infrastructure
  • Cultural, aesthetic and recreational values
  • Cultural identity
  • Social conflict

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

  • Good health and well-being
  • Gender equality
  • Decent work and economic growth

Key Attributes

Spatial scale of RS

  • Local/landscape

Time scale of RS

  • Years
  • Decades

Reversibility

  • Hysteretic

Evidence

  • Contemporary observations

Confidence: Existence of RS

  • Contested – Reasonable evidence both for and against the existence of RS

Confidence: Mechanism underlying RS

  • Well established – Wide agreement on the underlying mechanism

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Key References

  1. Allsopp N. 2014. Fynbos: ecology, evolution and conservation of a megadiverse region. Oxford University Press, USA.
  2. Blackburn T, et al. 2011. A proposed unified framework for biological invasions. Trends in Ecology and Evolution, 26, 333-339.
  3. Charles H, and Dukes JS. 2008. Impacts of invasive species on ecosystem services. In: Biological Invasions, Nentwig, W. (ed). Springer, Berlin. pp 217-237.
  4. Gaertner M, et al. 2014. Invasive plants as drivers of regime shifts: identifying high-priority invaders that alter feedback relationships. Diversity and Distributions 20,733-744.
  5. Le Maitre D, et al 1996. Invasive plants and water resources in the Western Cape province, South Africa; Modeling and the consequences of a lack of management. Journal of Applied Ecology 33, 161-172.
  6. Le Maitre D, et al. 2011 Impacts of invasive Australian acacias: implications for management and restoration. Diversity and Distributions 17, 1015-1029.
  7. Richardson DM, et al. 1989. Reductions in plant species richness under stands of alien trees and shrubs in the fynbos biome. South African Forestry Journal 149,1-8.
  8. Shackleton CM, et al 2007. Assessing the effects of alien species on rural livelihoods; case examples and a framework from South Africa. Human Ecology 35, 113-127.
  9. Turpie J, et al. 2003. Economic value of terrestrial and marine biodiversity in the Cape Floristic Region: implications for defining effective and socially optimal conservation strategies. Biological Conservation 122, 233-251.
  10. van Wilgen BW, et al 2012. An assessment of the effectiveness of a large national-scale invasive alien plant control strategy in South Africa. Biological Conservation 148, 28-38.
  11. van Wilgen BW, et al. 2011. National-scale strategic approaches for managing introduced plants: Insights from Australian acacias in South Africa. Diversity and Distributions 17, 1060-1075.
  12. Wilson JRU, et al. 2013. A new national unite for invasive species detection, assessment and eradication planning. South African Journal of Science 109, 1-13.

Citation

Ross Shackleton, Dave Richardson, Reinette (Oonsie) Biggs. Megadiverse fynbos shrublands to invasive wattle tree monoculture. In: Regime Shifts Database, www.regimeshifts.org. Last revised 2018-05-30 08:50:01 GMT.
Sunday, 05 March 2017 16:28

Mediterranean Basin - fire regime

Written by Juli Pausas

Mediterranean Basin - fire regime

Main Contributors:

Juli Pausas, Ross Shackleton

Other Contributors:

Dave Richardson, Reinette (Oonsie) Biggs

Summary

In the European region of the Mediterranea Basin there was an abrupt fire regime shift in such a way that fires increased in annual frequency (doubled) and area burned (by about an order of magnitude). The main driver of this shift was the increase in fuel amount and continuity due to rural depopulation (vegetation and fuel build-up after farm abandonment) suggesting that fires were fuel-limited previous to the shift. Climatic conditions are poorly related to wildfire activity during the pre-shift period and strongly related during the to post-shift period, suggesting that fires are currently less fuel limited and more drought-driven than before. Thus, the fire regime shift implies also a shift in the main driver for fire activity. This shift was dated in the 1970s in Spain but this may varies in other countries.

Type of regime shift

  • Fire regime shift

Ecosystem type

  • Mediterranean shrubs (egFynbos)

Land uses

  • Small-scale subsistence crop cultivation

Spatial scale of the case study

  • Sub-continental/regional (e.g. southern Africa, Amazon basin)

Continent or Ocean

  • Europe

Region

  • Mediterranean Basin

Countries

  • Spain
  • Greece

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Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Key References

  1. Pausas J.G. & Fernández-Muñoz S. 2012. Fire regime changes in the Western Mediterranean Basin: from fuel-limited to drought-driven fire regime. Climatic Change 110: 215-226.
  2. Pausas J.G. & Fernández-Muñoz S. 2012. Fire regime changes in the Western Mediterranean Basin: from fuel-limited to drought-driven fire regime. Climatic Change 110: 215-226. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10584-011-0060-6

Citation

Juli Pausas, Ross Shackleton, Dave Richardson, Reinette (Oonsie) Biggs. Mediterranean Basin - fire regime. In: Regime Shifts Database, www.regimeshifts.org. Last revised 2018-01-17 14:28:25 GMT.
Friday, 08 January 2016 16:52

Vegetation regime shifts in Yamal-Nenets

Written by Hanna Ahlström

Vegetation regime shifts in Yamal-Nenets

Main Contributors:

Jonas Gren, Fernando Remolina, Hanna Ahlström, Ashley Perl

Other Contributors:

Juan Carlos Rocha

Summary

The Yamal-Nenets social-ecological system comprises about 5000 nomadic reindeer herders and 300 000 semi-domestic reindeers, moving with the seasons in 21 different brigades from the southern tree limit up north, across the Arctic tundra. Shrub encroachment has been observed during the last three decades, but has been controlled by reindeer grazing. These changes have produced two regime states: shrubland without reindeer herding, and open land with reindeer herding. The first regime is mainly caused by temperature increase, which has produced warmer winters, summers and extended growing seasons. These temperature changes have altered the controlling feedbacks of the tundra, such as slow growth of shrubs, microbial activity, and decomposition litter rates. This regime is hence seen as the undesirable regime for the Yamal-Nenets social-ecological system.

Type of regime shift

Ecosystem type

  • Grasslands
  • Tundra
  • Rock and Ice
  • Agro-ecosystems

Land uses

  • Extensive livestock production (natural rangelands)

Spatial scale of the case study

  • Local/landscape (e.g. lake, catchment, community)

Continent or Ocean

  • Asia
  • Europe

Region

  • Yamal Peninsula, Northwest Siberia

Countries

  • Russia

Locate with Google Map

Drivers

Key direct drivers

  • Environmental shocks (eg floods)

Land use

  • Small-scale subsistence crop cultivation
  • Intensive livestock production (eg feedlots)
  • Extensive livestock production (rangelands)
  • Conservation
  • Tourism

Impacts

Ecosystem type

  • Agro-ecosystems

Biodiversity

  • Biodiversity

Provisioning services

  • Freshwater
  • Food crops
  • Livestock
  • Wild animal and plant products
  • Woodfuel

Cultural services

  • Recreation

Human Well-being

  • Food and nutrition
  • Livelihoods and economic activity
  • Security of housing & infrastructure
  • Cultural, aesthetic and recreational values
  • Cultural identity
  • Social conflict

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

  • Good health and well-being
  • Gender equality
  • Decent work and economic growth

Key Attributes

Spatial scale of RS

  • Local/landscape

Time scale of RS

  • Years
  • Decades

Reversibility

  • Hysteretic

Evidence

  • Contemporary observations

Confidence: Existence of RS

  • Contested – Reasonable evidence both for and against the existence of RS

Confidence: Mechanism underlying RS

  • Well established – Wide agreement on the underlying mechanism

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Key References

  1. Aune, S., Hofgaard, A., & Söderström, L. 2011. Contrasting climate- and land-use-driven tree encroachment patterns of subarctic tundra in northern Norway and the Kola. Canadian Journal of Forest Research, 41(3), 437–449.
  2. Bråthen, K. A., Ims, R. a., Yoccoz, N. G., Fauchald, P., Tveraa, T., & Hausner, V. H. 2007. Induced Shift in Ecosystem Productivity? Extensive Scale Effects of Abundant Large Herbivores. Ecosystems, 10(5), 773–789.
  3. Couture, T., and Gagnon, Y. 2010. An analysis of feed-in tariff remuneration models: Implications for renewable energy investment. Energy policy 38 (10), 955-965. Degteva, A., & Nellemann, C. (2013). Nenets migration in the landscape: impacts of industrial development in Yamal peninsula, Russia. Pastoralism: Research, Policy and Practice, 3(1), 15.
  4. Forbes, B. C., Stammler, F., Kumpula, T., Meschtyb, N., Pajunen, A., & Kaarlejärvi, E. 2009. High resilience in the Yamal-Nenets social-ecological system, West Siberian Arctic, Russia. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 106(52), 22041–8.
  5. Golovatin, M. G., Morozova, L. M., & Ektova, S. N. 2012. Effect of reindeer overgrazing on vegetation and animals of tundra ecosystems of the Yamal peninsula, Czech Polar reports, 2(12), 80–91
  6. Grace, J., Berninger, F., & Nagy, L. 2002. Impacts of Climate Change on the Tree Line. Annals of Botany, 90(4), 537–544.
  7. Henden, J.-A., Yoccoz, N. G., Ims, R. a, & Langeland, K. 2013. How spatial variation in areal extent and configuration of labile vegetation states affect the riparian bird community in Arctic tundra. PloS one, 8(5),1-10.
  8. Kullman, L. 2002. Rapid recent range-margin rise of tree and shrub species in the Swedish Scandes. Journal of Ecology, 90(1), 68–77.
  9. Kumpula, T., Forbes, B. C., Stammler, F., & Meschtyb, N. 2012. Dynamics of a Coupled System: Multi-Resolution Remote Sensing in Assessing Social-Ecological Responses during 25 Years of Gas Field Development in Arctic Russia. Remote Sensing, 4(12), 1046–1068.
  10. Kumpula, T., Pajunen, A., Kaarlejärvi, E., Forbes, B. C., & Stammler, F. 2011. Land use and land cover change in Arctic Russia: Ecological and social implications of industrial development. Global Environmental Change, 21(2), 550–562.
  11. Macias-Fauria M, Forbes BC, Zetterberg P, Kumpula T. 2012. Eurasian Arctic greening reveals teleconnections and the potential for structurally novel ecosystems. Nature Climate Change 2, 613–618.
  12. Myers-Smith, I. H. 2007. Shrub Line Advance in Alpine Tundra of the Kluane Region: Mechanisms of Expansion and Ecosystem Impacts. Arctic, 60(4), 447-451.
  13. Olofsson, J., Oksanen, L., Callaghan, T., Hulme, P. E., Oksanen, T., & Suominen, O. 2009. Herbivores inhibit climate-driven shrub expansion on the tundra. Global Change Biology, 15(11), 2681–2693.
  14. Strum, M., Douglas, T., Racine, C., & Liston, G. E. 2005. Chagning snow and shrub conditions affect albedo with global implications. Journal of Geophysical Research, 110, 2156-2202.
  15. Sturm, M., Schimel, J., Michaelson, G., Welker, J. M., Oberbauer, S. F., Liston, G. E., … Romanovsky, V. E. 2005. Winter Biological Processes Could Help Convert Arctic Tundra to Shrubland. BioScience, 55(1), 17-26.
  16. Tape, K., Sturm, M., & Racine, C. 2006. The evidence for shrub expansion in Northern Alaska and the Pan-Arctic. Global Change Biology, 12(4), 686–702.
  17. Wal, V. D. R., 2006. Do herbivores cause habitat degradation or vegetation state transition ? Evidence from the tundra. Oikos, 114:1, 177–186.
  18. Walker, D. A., Forbes, B. C., Leibman, M. O., Epstein, H. E., Bhatt, U. S., Comiso, J. C., … Yu, Q. 2011. Eurasian Arctic Land Cover and Land Use in a Changing Climate. (G. Gutman & A. Reissell, Eds.), 207–236.
  19. Walker, M. D., C. Wahren, H., Hollister, R. D., Henry, G. H. R., Ahlquist, L. E., Alatalo, J., … Wookey, P. A. 2006. Plant community responses to experimental warming across the tundra biome PNAS, 103(5), 1342-1346.
  20. Yu, Q., Epstein, H. E., Walker, D. a, Frost, G. V, & Forbes, B. C. 2011. Modeling dynamics of tundra plant communities on the Yamal Peninsula, Russia, in response to climate change and grazing pressure. Environmental Research Letters, 6(4),1-12.
  21. Zeng, H., Jia, G., & Forbes, B. C. 2013. Shifts in Arctic phenology in response to climate and anthropogenic factors as detected from multiple satellite time series. Env. Rev. Lett., 8, 1–12.
  22. Zimov, A. S. A., Chuprynin, V. I., Oreshko, A. P., Iii, F. S. C., & Reynolds, J. F. 1995. Steppe-Tundra Transition : A Herbivore-Driven Biome Shift at the End of the Pleistocene American Naturalist 146(5), 765–794.

Citation

Jonas Gren, Fernando Remolina, Hanna Ahlström, Ashley Perl, Juan Carlos Rocha. Vegetation regime shifts in Yamal-Nenets. In: Regime Shifts Database, www.regimeshifts.org. Last revised 2017-02-08 10:45:18 GMT.

Collapse of Newfoundland cod fisheries, Northwest Atlantic

Main Contributors:

Roweena Patel, Kate Williman, Viveca Mellegard, Philipp Siegel

Other Contributors:

Reinette (Oonsie) Biggs, Juan Carlos Rocha

Summary

The Newfoundland cod fishery is a social-ecological system that is centered upon Arctic cod, Gadus morhua populations in the waters off Newfoundland and Labrador in the Northwest Atlantic. High fishing pressure, along with regional climatic variability that delivered colder water to the Northwest Atlantic ocean, disturbed the cod spawning grounds and led to a dramatic cod fishery collapse. Recovery in the fishery has been minimal and very slow, partly because cod population growth will take time to replenish the amount of stock that was lost. This regime shift has impacted ecosystem services by reducing the food source both at the local and the global scale. There has also been a loss of income from cod fishing at the local scale that affects human wellbeing among Newfoundland fishers and the communities relying directly and indirectly on the fishing industry. Actions taken to restore the cod regime shift includes banning of the commercial fisheries in the Northwest Atlantic, tighter regulations and dock-side monitoring programs.

Type of regime shift

Ecosystem type

  • Marine & coastal

Land uses

  • Fisheries

Spatial scale of the case study

  • Sub-continental/regional (e.g. southern Africa, Amazon basin)

Continent or Ocean

  • North America
  • Atlantic Ocean

Region

  • Northern North Atlantic

Countries

  • Canada

Locate with Google Map

Drivers

Key direct drivers

  • Environmental shocks (eg floods)

Land use

  • Small-scale subsistence crop cultivation
  • Intensive livestock production (eg feedlots)
  • Extensive livestock production (rangelands)
  • Conservation
  • Tourism

Impacts

Ecosystem type

  • Agro-ecosystems

Biodiversity

  • Biodiversity

Provisioning services

  • Freshwater
  • Food crops
  • Livestock
  • Wild animal and plant products
  • Woodfuel

Cultural services

  • Recreation

Human Well-being

  • Food and nutrition
  • Livelihoods and economic activity
  • Security of housing & infrastructure
  • Cultural, aesthetic and recreational values
  • Cultural identity
  • Social conflict

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

  • Good health and well-being
  • Gender equality
  • Decent work and economic growth

Key Attributes

Spatial scale of RS

  • Local/landscape

Time scale of RS

  • Years
  • Decades

Reversibility

  • Hysteretic

Evidence

  • Contemporary observations

Confidence: Existence of RS

  • Contested – Reasonable evidence both for and against the existence of RS

Confidence: Mechanism underlying RS

  • Well established – Wide agreement on the underlying mechanism

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

Alternate regimes

Livestock farming: This regime was characterised by livestock farms where sheep, goats and dairy were kept mainly for commercial purposes. The livestock farms also served as homes to different group of dwellers including workers and farmers, alongside their families. Food was easily produced because there was space to grow own vegetables and keep poultry, hunt game meat and harvest fuelwood. The regime also provided security of space and livelihoods and valued social and community interactions. There was also ownership of assets (e.g. livestock) at individual level, especially to workers.

Game farming: This regime is characterised by introduction of fences that caged in purchased wild animals, both extralimital and local species (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014), introduced to attract foreign visitors (Maciejewski, 2012). It also involves establishment of lodges, camping sites, recreational facilities and other tourist preference facilities to maximize economic outcome. This reorganization limits or does not accommodate residential use, especially of farm workers, (i) due to security concerns of dangerous wild animals such as lions, leopards and cheetah, (ii) the need to conserve biodiversity, hence keep the land use as purely conservational, (iii) almost irreversible mind shift, political and management configurations that have shaped game farming in South Africa.

Drivers and causes of the regime shift

Interviews by Achieng (2018) revealed that decision by farmers to convert from livestock to game farming was primarily influenced by a six-year drought that occurred between 1989-1995. The prolonged drought led to the drying up of the Bushman’s River, along with other water sources that sustained livestock on the farms. The quality and quantity of cultivated and natural pasture for livestock was also reduced by the drought. As a result, the market value of livestock products declined in quality and quantity (Jones et al., 2005; Smith & Wilson, 2002). The resulting economic pressures influenced the farmers decision to convert their pastoral land into game farms.

Farmers’ decision to shift into game farming was profit driven and included the fear of losing land to communities through expropriation as part of the ongoing national process of land reform in South Africa. According to Achieng et al., (2020),  change to game farming was a ‘selfish’ act, related to individual farmers’ fear of sharing or losing their land. This positively reinforced farmer’s ‘greed’ and increased their desire to adopt game farming as a strategy to legitimize their position as game farmers. The shift to game farming also centred around the conservation benefits of game farming industry. Landowners saw game farming practice as a sustainable land use that increases the protected area estate and contributes to the conservation of biodiversity.

How the regime shift worked

The incremental adoption of game farming in the Eastern cape catalysed the spread of ideas and motivations for this model. Soon, neighbouring farms such as Shamwari Game Reserve, started converting their pastoral land into game farms. These new farms’ success, which was perceived to be generating more profit, made game farming increasingly attractive to the surrounding neighbours. As farm conversion gradually spread among livestock farmers in the areas, the idea of an increased tourism industry in the Eastern Cape was strengthened, and thus reinforced the possibility of landowners to shift to game farming. As a result, eight neighbouring livestock farms in Amakhala were amalgamated to create the Amakhala Conservation Centre in 1999. With the conversion into a game farm, game species were introduced including cheetah, buffalo, elephant (Maciejewski & Kerley, 2014) and different types of antelope. Old houses were converted into lodges and Amakhala became an ecotourism operating game reserve, with eight lodges and camping facilities. Services offered by these private reserves have since attracted a number of domestic (ECPTA, 2018) and international tourists (Acheampong, 2015), ranking Eastern Cape as the third most visited province in South Africa by 2018 (ECPTA, 2018).

Impacts on ecosystem services and human well-being

According to Achieng et al., (2020), the shift from livestock farms into game farms changed the nature of ecosystem service provision in terms of quality and quantity, and accessibility and availability. It led to a decrease in provision of food from livestock and gardens, wood fuel, and game meat. Spiritual practices however remained consistent in both land uses, although churches were moved to different locations within the game farms.  

Socially, the establishment of game farms radically altered the networks of social relations attached to these places (Achieng et al., 2020; Mkhize, 2014). The livestock farms were seen as homes to most farmworkers, a place that allowed social networks to be established, which was integral to their sense of community. Worker residents were moved off game farms in towns, which meant they had to commute to work each day. As a result, there were lost valued social networks that strengthened community bonds, lost homes and security to the land, through erection of fences.

Game farms as land uses have more economic activities (Paul & Rashid, 2017) and gains generated from tourist activities (Brandt & Spierenburg, 2014). The economic benefits contributed to individual financial wellbeing and may extend beyond the reserve. The increase in profit generated from the game farm sector contributes to the GDP of the province, as affirmed by Maciejewski (2012), a benefit that according a provincial report, extends beyond the scale of the reserve and may be counted at a national scale (ECPTA, 2018; KO, 2015). According to Achieng et al., (2020), the economic gains were also important to both landowners and farmworkers at varied levels, and contributed to their financial wellbeing (Brandt & Spierenburg 2014).

In terms of gender impacts, change in economic status was most apparent among women workers. While women’s incomes may have increased, their socially prescribed roles as family carers and household managers did not change. This aligns with studies of the gender of paid and unpaid labour worldwide and across socio-economic categories - when women take on paid work often their unpaid labour - caring for families, does not decrease, resulting in an increase in their overall labour demands (WEF, 2015; Knudsen & Wærness, 2008). According to Achieng et al., (2020), women testified that their domestic duties did not decrease, even though their work duties in the game farm regime increased. While men’s paid work duties may have changed with the regime change, there was no indication that they took on previously female gendered roles in the household even though women took on additional paid work, along with their usual unpaid duties.

Management options

Regime shifts in social-ecological systems can present new forms of social narratives that can be constructed for a socially functioning society. To better manage the transition from livestock to game farming for all land users, Achieng (2018) suggests that  it is imperative to foster good and transparent relationships between ecosystem users in the process of change. This is in reference to major decisions of operations, especially those that significantly alter their living conditions. Crépin et al.,  (2012) also allude to better ways of navigating such transitions, including understanding context of different ecosystem stakeholders and asking questions of who the regime shift is significant to and diverse impacts it has on different ecosystem users.

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Citation

Roweena Patel, Kate Williman, Viveca Mellegard, Philipp Siegel, Reinette (Oonsie) Biggs, Juan Carlos Rocha. Collapse of Newfoundland cod fisheries, Northwest Atlantic. In: Regime Shifts Database, www.regimeshifts.org. Last revised 2017-02-07 12:18:06 GMT.
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