Thinking about it, animal behaviour is a resource. Like many other resources animal behaviour has economic value. That is from tourism perspectives. This can be food for thought during the 2012 / 2013 budget debates for Tanzania which have started this week.
For example, most tourists visit Tanzania to view wild animals. Specifically the tourists visit the country to view wild animal behaviour in their natural state.
According to Wikipedia, the New York Times has awarded Tanzania 7th position among 45 top destinations to visit in 2012. The tourist industry currently supports 27,000 jobs and generates 25% of Tanzania's foreign exchange. Tanzania has been expected to receive one million tourists by the end of 2011 and to generate about US$1.7 billion (TSh2.7 trillion) in revenue.
Tourism creates jobs for people to work in conservation areas, transport, hospitality industry and those who work to operate tourism-related infrastructures like roads in the parks and at airports.
As a foreign exchange earner for the country, the Bank of Tanzania's monthly economic review for December shows that tourism brought in a total of $1.2 billion in foreign exchange in the year ended November 2011.
Economists explain that revenues in the form of foreign currencies enhance a country's ability to import necessary goods and services from overseas. Tourism is said to be second to Gold as a foreign exchange earner for the country.
Very important for Tanzania is that tourism generates indirect tax revenue for the country, largely because the consumption by tourists can be taxed relatively efficiently. Economists elaborate that indirect taxes, sometimes called "consumption taxes," include sales taxes, excise taxes, value-added taxes (VAT) and customs taxes while income taxes and property taxes are considered to be direct taxes because such taxes are collected directly from individuals based solely on an "ability to pay" principle. Admittedly, taxation is complicated for many.
Product branding is another economic value of animal behaviour in addition to economic values related to employment, revenue and foreign currency considerations
Branding can be defined as the process involved in creating a unique name and image for a product in the consumers' minds, mainly through advertising with a consistent theme. Branding aims to establish a significant and differentiated presence in the market that attracts and retains loyal customers. Therefore, the importance of brands in business cannot be overemphasized.
Logos represent organizations brands. Many successful businesses use animals as their logos to represent their company brands or images. Examples are tour companies in Tanzania. Leopard Tours and Safaris use a Leopard for a logo and there is Thomson Safaris which use Thomson Gazelle as its logo.
Overseas, the logo for the Playboy Magazine is a rabbit. The creator of the "playboy" magazine, once explained, "I selected a rabbit as the symbol of the magazine because of the animal's sexual connotation. A horse represents Ferrari.Puma represents the brand of famous football shoes called puma. Ecologists inform that, apumawill eat anyanimalit can catch, evenalarge one. It is an expression of prowess for the company. A duck represents Twitter while Alfa Romeo is a snake and Lamborghini is a bull.
The film industry exposes economic values of animal behaviour as well. Some of the best selling films are on animal behaviour. The documentaries by the National Geographic have become synonymous with animal behaviour with references to the organizations documentaries on animals. But you wonder if anybody in parliament will read this far during the 2012/2013 parliamentary budget session in Tanzania.