HUMAN - WILDLIFE CONFLICT
In Tanzania, there are many opportunities for wild animals and humans to come into contact with each other, which is causing trouble.
There are several reasons why wild animals and humans collide.
・Due to the impact of population growth, human settlements and activities has expanded and cause habitat fragmentation to the land where wild animals used to live. Wild animals will always come back to their land of origin to look for food and water and this is where the collision start.
・Animals who are persistently chased by poachers and trophy hunters (hunting games) escape from their habitats and approach human living areas.
Because poachers are often familiar with water fountains and child-rearing areas for wild animals, highly family-conscious animals such as elephants are more likely to be targeted for life in water fountains and child-rearing areas, which can kill entire families. In addition, as a result of wandering in search of new water, or as a result of continuing to move to protect babies, it is not uncommon for wild animals to end up in water areas that are used by humans.
Also killing animals for sport , poaching and smuggling of a certain animals disturbs the food chain causing predator to enter human area for survival.
.As a result of changes in the global environment due to global warming, water and food in the wild become scarce and so wild animals enter human areas for survival. As a result, wild animals and humans come close to each other, causing carnivores to attack livestock and people and elephants to eat farm products in fields.
Once wild animals have had such an experience, they don't stop and they will do the same thing over and over again. This create and endless conflict where farmers and livestock keepers kill wild animals to prevent damage and to retaliate.
Mr. Jonas Margwe
His farm is protected from elephants by the installation of red pepper flags.
WHAT WE DO FOR NOW
N:B Stopping human activities and infrastructure development adjacent to protected areas, evacuating humans from the areas which were formerly inhabited by wildlife, monitoring of human population growth, saving our planet from pollution and leaving natural ecosystem alone without intervention would have been a great way to combat human-wildlife conflict.
But most of these solutions require government political decision which does not always favor the interest of the animals. But we will continue to advice the government to make sustainable decisions when it comes to land policy and use.
For now the only thing we can do is it protect the animals from harm by providing knowledge to people on how better to avoid these conflicts.
KNOWLEDGE A& CAPACITY BUILDING
Most farmers in Tanzania are small scale farmers who cultivate crops just to feed their families.
We're teaching these farmers to use non lethal methods to prevent elephant crop raiding without harming them. Eg. the use of chili pepper flags instead of poison.
・We are helping farmers to carry out non lethal operations. Eg the use of flash light instead of firecrackers.
Chili fence & bee hives
In order to prevent elephants from approaching and invading field of crops such as beans, corn and sugar cane that elephants like to eat.
Scientific studies and experiments has proven that elephants stay away from Chili peppers and bees. Elephants dislike chili because chili smell irritate their nose. Also Elephants are afraid of bees because they dislike being stung in the soft tissue that's present inside their trunks and around their eyes. So when they sense the alarm pheromones from honeybees, they'd likely keep their distance from that area.
For now we're doing a "Chili flag campaign" while learning more about bee hives fence. For Chili program we're teaching local farmers to prepare and chili fence to surround their farm fields especially near the harvest season where the elephants might visit.
Pilipili means chili pepper in Swahili.
The pilipili are crushed and mixed with water, small pieces of flags will be made from unused cloths and then soaked into the liquid mixture to ferment for a bout a week. There are some studies which use the used engine oil with the mixture but we have opted that method because we don't think if this used oil is safe for the environment especially near the farm fields where crops are cultivated for food.
After a week chili fence will be erected where the smell of pilipili drifts around the field.
Elephants are very sensitive to odors, and their sense of smell is said to be twice or five times that of dogs, so the elephants will definitely avoid the field. Due to change of weather farmers have to apply the liquid again after every two weeks or after every seven days depend on the tense of weather.
One of our plan was also to buy pilipili seedlings and distribute to the trained farmers so that they can grow pilipili and continue to protect their fields in the future while disbursing the skills to other farmers.(As of February 2021, the distribution of seedlings was suspended due to the shortage of funds.)