Date of Award

12-2019

Degree Type

Report

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Environment and Society

Committee

Jordan Smith

Committee

Paul Jakus

Committee

Christopher Monz

Abstract

Angling in Minnesota’s North Shore faces unique threats from the impacts of climate change. These impacts, such as changes in the presence and/or abundance of specific species, present management challenges which might also influence the demand for recreational angling throughout the region. Anglers’ adaptations to climate change in the North Shore region could shift densities, timing, and spatial use of the region’s fish populations, increasing the stress on ecological systems. Developing an empirically-grounded understanding of the contingent behaviors of anglers is imperative if the region’s fish populations are to be managed sustainably. Using a travel cost model, we measured the demand for angling under current conditions and a range of future climate and environmental conditions. Our research also explores the adaptive and coping behaviors of anglers. We tested the substitution of anglers against non-anglers to determine if anglers exhibit sensitivities in their contingent behaviors. Results imply anglers to the North Shore would not alter their trip-taking behavior under any of the future climate and environmental conditions presented. However, anglers are willing to substitute recreation settings, and even their participation in the activity, in response to future climate and environmental conditions. These substitution patterns are significantly different than those reported by non-anglers. This study provides empirical evidence of substitution behavior amongst anglers in response to shifts in environmental and climatic conditions. Further research is needed to understand why anglers’ future trip-taking behaviors are not responsive to changes in climate and environmental conditions, though their substitution behaviors are. Our findings can be used to help managers maintain the satisfaction, experiences, and participation of future generations of anglers.

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