David Kabambo, Director of Peace for Conservation
The elephant is perhaps the most iconic migratory land mammal in the world. Rising incidents ofhuman-elephant conflict are occurring where elephants are exploring old migratory routes. In many cases, they are either being blocked by new development or break into farmland plots to take advantage of nutritional agricultural produce.Lacking more effective methods, farmers confronting elephants in the dark, are often left with no choice but to throw stones and firecrackers to chase them away. In this situation, some elephants will charge and attack. These negative incidents often lead to terrible injuries or death of both people and elephants.
Peace for Conservation (PFC) is a Tanzanian non-governmental organization (NGO). Itoperates at boththe grassroots and national levels. PFC aspires to conserve wildlife and wild places, improve community health and alleviate poverty at the grassroots level. PFCrecognizesthat community engagement on conservation creates a positive dynamic change of conservation and diplomacy towards achieving peace and conservation, due to equal sharing of accrued benefits from conservation through advocacy that leads to commonunderstanding.
Elephants Avoid Bees
Research conducted in Kenya with elephants in Samburu and Buffalo Springs National Reserve by Dr. Luck King, hasrevealed that broadcasts of disturbed bee recordings cause elephants to run.Additionally, when they do run away, the elephants emit a unique low frequency “bee alarm rumble” vocalization. This sound warns neighboring elephants to retreat as well. Anecdotes from local people, who have witnessed elephants being stung by swarms of bees, tell us that bees can sting elephants around the eyesand in the thinner skin behind the ears. These stings must be painful enough to make elephants try to avoid future encounters.
With assistance from Peace for Conservation, farmers affected by crop raids have been receiving training to install beehive fences. Rural farmers are using the knowledge of beehives to protect their fields from elephant cropraids. Through support from different donors. PFC has provided 210 beehives which were installed along farmboundaries.
Benefits of Beehive Fences
Reduce human-elephant conflicts.Beehive fences control elephant crop raids and reduce dangerous conflicts between elephants, farmers, and parkmanagers.
Provide a source of income.Profits are generated through selling honey. The living standard of local families will improve as money earned from honey production can fund activities such as construction of better housing and paying school fees for children and siblings.