The odds of South African agriculture using wildlife ranching to adapt to climate change

Jackson Otieno, Edwin Muchapondwa, and Herbert Ntuli



In this paper, we explore the role of wildlife in climate change adaptation, especially in areas used predominantly for livestock production in South Africa. Using a sample of 3 449 wildlife and livestock ranches, we estimate a multinomial choice model of various ranching options in these areas. The results indicate that mixed wildlife-livestock ranches are less vulnerable to climate change when compared to ranches with only wildlife or only livestock. However, given the ranching options, the revenues of ranches with only wildlife are higher compared to other ranches. The results further show that an increase in temperature will influence more livestock farmers, especially those farming with cattle, to change their land use from livestock to wildlife ranching. Using climate models, we establish that livestock farmers in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa will be affected most by climate change and will subsequently change their land use.