Invasive Plant Species and the Competitiveness of Wildlife Tourist Destination : A Case of Sadengan Feeding Area at Alas Purwo National Park, Indonesia <Articles>
JIDC_12-1_35.pdf 761 KB
Leksono, Amin Setyo
Alas Purwo National Park
wildlife tourist destination
Wildlife tourism has been promoted at Alas Purwo National Park (APNP) since this was identified as one of the biodiversity centers in Indonesia. Within this park, the Sadengan feeding area (SFA) was established and has evolved into a wildlife tourist destination since 1970, due to the numerous and diverse animals in this area. The quality of a tourist destination has been recognized as a main factor in the competitiveness of wildlife tourism. This study examined the current conditions of the SFA with respect to the vegetation structure, number of Bos javanicus as flagship species for conservation and domestic tourists perception of SFA as a wildlife tourist destination. A field study was undertaken during the dry period at the SFA-APNP. The line intercept method was used to determine vegetation structure, while the number of Bos javanicus was assessed by the direct counting method. Domestic tourist perception was assessed by semi-structured interviews with local tourists as respondents, followed by service quality score (SERVC) analysis. The results showed that the five most important plant species related to the value index were Cassia tora, Eupatorium inulifolium, Lantana camara, Cyperus brevifolius and C. iria. Three of them, C. tora, E. inulifolium and L. camara, are known as non-indigenous plant species and those have invaded the SFA. The current census showed that the abundance of Bos javanicus was fewer than 6 individuals and seemed to be decreasing with time. Furthermore, it seems that this low number of Bos javanicus in SFA may lead to tourist dissatisfaction. This was demonstrated by negative gap values between tourist expectation and tourist perception among respondents, which indicating that most of the expectation of local tourists were not met. This study suggests that habitat management of SFA as a wildlife conservation area and wildlife tourist destination needs serious attention to meet conservation objectives and make the SFA a more attractive wildlife tourist destination.