The analysis has been conducted starting from the inventory of damages recorded at the regional level in the period from 2007 to 2012. To check on the size of damages caused by ungulates, the ANOVA (analysis of variance) test was applied to the variable “total estimated compensation”, taking the annualised costs of damage as source of variation.
The analysis of variance (ANOVA) is a set of statistical techniques, related to inferential statistics, used to analyse the differences between two or more groups of data by comparing the variability within and among the groups. The ANOVA test provides a final balance (C), given by the ratio of the sum of squares of intergroup means to the sum of squares of intragroup means, compared with the resulting value of Fisher's F with p-1, nt-p degrees of freedom, among the different annuities being compared.
In this study the one-way ANOVA test has been used to assess the differences between the amounts of compensations in the 6 years under study, both at the regional level and by reference area.
The test is used to test whether the differences between the means of compensations from 2007 to 2012 are significant. In other words, the test enables to understand whether the dynamics connected with the damages caused by wildlife are due to unpredictable extraordinary events or to an existing trend.
Moreover, if conducted for different local areas, the ANOVA test enables the differentiation based on randomness and/or trends. This specific step has entailed the choice of the target area.
The area relating the Parco Nazionale del Pollino is shared by three provinces and two regions, Potenza and Matera in Basilicata and Cosenza in Calabria. The total area covers nearly 193,000 ha, of which 88,650 in the Basilicata hillside. Basilicata's 24 municipalities fall within the boundaries of the Parco's territory. The peculiarity that makes this protected area a unique environment is the sudden change from the coast to the mountain that creates a very rapid sequence of environments generating as many habitats and environments suitable for number of animal and plant species.
The Basilicata's portion includes the Sinni basin and encompasses large forests, pastures and farmland areas.
Settlement areas are closely related to farming activities that identify a landscape featured by rural areas and scattered or grouped houses forming small nuclei, with a mean population density of 40 inhab./km2 (ISTAT 2010). The areas destined for primary production have been progressively abandoned: through the last 30 years, over one third of farmland (37 %) has not been cultivated any longer, and this surface has further reduced by 13 % over the last decade only. Cultivated crops include mostly cereals, followed, to a much lower extent, by forage, vegetables, grapevine and fruit trees. Most crops are not highly remunerative, although there is a high agricultural biodiversity, made of traditional native species and varieties, among which annuals and vineyard are at high risk.
This diversification of environments forming real mosaics of structural and morphological components of the landscape combined with the protection levels ensured “ope legis” to the animal and plant species living in the protected area and creates a strong concentration of some wild animal species, thus generating severe damages to the existing agricultural systems.