Good news from Tusk’s partner The Big Life Foundation as they announce a decline in poaching in the first quarter of 2017 – their hard work alongside that of the KWS (Kenya Wildlife Service) is beginning to pay off! The combined efforts have also made progress in addressing the rise in human-elephant conflict, but there is still a long way to go…
Big Life Foundation are extremely happy to announce that another quarter has gone by without a single confirmed case of elephant poaching in Kenya’s Amboseli landscape. However the issue of human-elephant conflict continues to be a main focus for Big Life. The last few months have been hard for both animals and people as the drought has taken its toll. Failed crops have seen communities looking for alternative ways to make a living; this has resulted in an increase in bush meat poaching. Elephants are also having to look further afield in search of food and sadly crops are an easy target.
In the Big Life area of work elephants were responsible for 170 crop raiding incidents equating to 151 acres of damage during the first quarter of 2017. This has in turn increased the number of incidents where humans have been injured or killed and as a result has amplified the retaliation against elephants and mortality rates have risen. In order to address these human-elephant conflicts Big Life has mobilised community members to assist in the deployment of crop-protection rangers. This quarter Big Life rangers prevented over 300 incidents by intercepting the animals before any crop damage could be done, avoiding many human casualties.
Big Life is also working on an elephant exclusion fence to help address the human-elephant conflict zone. They have engaged with communities and are working with them to build and manage the fence which will help separate farms and people from wildlife; 38 kilometres of the fence has been built so far. Big Life’s construction team are also taking time to train 3 members of the community on fence construction and maintenance.
With the help of the elephant exclusion fence, crop-protection rangers and thorough community engagement Big Life hopes to decrease the number of human-elephant conflicts in the future.
Tusk has been a longstanding partner of Big Life; over the years we have continued to support the rangers and operational costs of this incredible foundation and we hope to continue doing so.
To read more, about the Big Life Foundation head to their website:
Please DONATE NOW to help Tusk and the Big Life Foundation continue their work with communities and protecting neighbouring wildlife.
Thanks to Big Life Foundation and Jeremy Goss for the images.