Office: SN 1022
Telephone: (709) 864-6127
Fax: (709) 864- 3119
Dr. Alistair Bath (Memorial University)
Dr. Jerry Vaske (Colorado State University)
Understanding Human-Coyote Interactions in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia
I grew up on the beaches and in the forests around Vancouver, BC and completed my BSc in Animal Biology at the University of British Columbia. My undergraduate thesis focused on social dynamics in African Painted Dogs. Since my bachelor’s I have continued to volunteer with animal conservation projects. Recently I completed my Master’s of Environmental Design with Dr. Marco Musiani from the University of Calgary. My research there examined residents’ attitudes toward wolves in southwest Alberta and the effects on wolf management strategies.
The evolution of my research interests over my career has converged in my PhD research. My research focuses on human dimension of natural resource management. I am specifically interested in the interface of relationships between humans, the management agency, and the resource. Human dimensions (HD) is an applied and research oriented field. From a research perspective, HD focuses upon people’s attitudes, values and behavior toward the environment. This provides insights on the nature of conflicts, and levels of support or opposition toward management options. From an applied perspective, HD uses public involvement techniques to engage people and identify a spectrum of possible solutions to achieve conservation. All management and conservation challenges share one common component: humans drive them. Due to the current biodiversity crisis and continued expanding human populations, involving people is no longer just an option, but crucial to achieve management and conservation objectives.
My PhD dissertation is on a case study of HD focusing on human-coyote interactions in Cape Breton Highlands National Park of Canada in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. The project involves minimizing human-coyote interactions through understanding attitudes and behaviour toward coyotes, knowledge about coyotes and coyote management. This is a four-year project involving park visitors, park staff and local community residents.
- Human Dimensions of Natural Resources
- Human-Wildlife Conflict
- Animal Geographies
- Experiential Education
- Resource Geography
- Species Conservation
Sponarski, C, A.J. Bath, J.J. Vaske, and M. Musiani. (In review). Conflict brewing within rural communities: Gone are the days when residents had the same attitudes toward wolves and wolf management. Human Dimensions of Wildlife.
Salomon, M., Sponarski, C., Larocque, A. & Avilés, L. 2010. Social organization of the colonial spider Leucauge sp. in the Neotropics: vertical stratification within colonies. Journal of Arachnology 38(3).
Sponarski, C., J.J. Vaske, and A.J. Bath. 2012. Attitudinal differences among residents, park staff, and visitors toward coyotes in Cape Breton Highlands National Park, Nova Scotia, Canada. Pathways to Success 2010 Conference. Breckenridge, Colorado, Sept 24 – Sept 27 (Oral Comm.).
Sponarski, C., A.J. Bath, and M. Musiani. 2010. Changing attitudinal rural landscape: A case study study of values and attitudes toward wolves and wolf management. Pathways to Success 2010 Conference. Estes Park, Colorado, Sept 27 – Oct 1 (Oral Comm.).