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PREM Working Paper 07-04 - Economics of Migratory Birds
Decisions on the protection of migratory birds are rarely driven by economic efficiency. As a result, most conservation measures are implemented in developed rather than developing countries where migratory birds reside during the wintertime. Economic rationality however, calls for interventions at locations along the migration route with the highest cost efficiency. This study develops a conceptual framework to determine the economic feasibility of an international market for migratory bird protection. Next, we show that migratory birds can be protected at a much lower cost in West Africa than in Western Europe. Moreover, a contingent valuation survey among Dutch citizens proves that taxpayers who indirectly pay for the conservation measures support the protection of migratory birds in their wintering areas in African countries. The results of the study justify the creation of an international market for migratory bird protection in which biodiversity services are supplied by West African communities to beneficiaries in Western Europe.
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