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Living with Elephants

Finding ways of preventing this is key to developing a more tolerant relationship between elephants and man.

As a pioneer in tracking and GPS technology, STE began by trying to deal with known notorious elephants, changing their habits one at a time. Our Geofencing project put an imaginary fence line around certain farms in Laikipia. Once crossed, the collar would send out a text message, much the same way you get a text from a friend saying they are right round the corner. Empowered by this knowledge, farmers would mobilize locals to chase the elephant away, long before he came anywhere near their farms. As true sentient beings, the collared crop raiders learnt the new boundaries with frightening speed, never to disturb the farmers of the area again.

This worked well for the lone bulls with collars, but what about marauding herds of hungry elephants barging into farms?

STE’s Elephants and Bees Project builds on our discovery of elephants’ natural fear of honeybees to help deter them from damaging fields of crops. By building a fence with wire connecting all the beehives, any large disturbance shakes the wire, letting out angry bees. Although elephants have impervious skin, baby elephants can potentially be stung to death by a swarm of African honeybees. Elephants also have vulnerable orifices, like their trunks and ears, which bees can easily sting through causing much harm and irritation.

Behind these fences, farmers can safely plant their crops, finally breathing a sigh of relief after years of clashes with elephants.

The bees in turn bring with them added rewards: pollination services which boost farm production, and of course honey, which rural farmers can both eat and sell, exponentially improving the economic potential of their farms, and the region.

We know the solutions we’ve presented are two tried and tested ones out of many. Therefore, STE is gathering data on all possible solutions and the conditions in which they work best, summarised neatly in a Human Elephant Conflict toolbox relevant to the Kenyan context.

Donate

The fate of elephants is in the balance. The record price of ivory has attracted organised crime, rebel militias and even terrorist groups, fuelling a surge of poaching across the continent. Without the outstanding support and generosity of our donors, STE would not be able to continue securing a future for the elephants. We urgently need your support, while there is still time. You can be of vital assistance by donating to either our core funds or to any of our projects.

Spread the Word

The fate of elephants is in the balance. The record price of ivory has attracted organised crime, rebel militias and even terrorist groups, fuelling a surge of poaching across the continent. Without the outstanding support and generosity of our donors, STE would not be able to continue securing a future for the elephants. We urgently need your support, while there is still time. You can be of vital assistance by donating to either our core funds or to any of our projects.

How You Can Help

Over the last years our world-leading conservation efforts have been possible thanks to the dedication and generosity of loyal supporters. To join them you can donate in a number of ways:

Elephants are fast disappearing from the wild. Without urgent, international action they could be gone within a generation. The Elephant Crisis Fund provides rapid, catalytic support for the most effective projects designed to stop the killing, thwart traffickers and end the demand for ivory. 100% of all donations reach the field.

Save the Elephants is funded almost entirely by private donations. It is only through the generous support of donors that we are able to continue our important elephant conservation work. We rely entirely on funds, grants and donations from around the world, so thank you for helping us to secure a future for these fascinating creatures.

Our unique brand of conservation education encourages students to become ambassadors of their rich environment. We also give opportunities to friends around the world to help educate young minds and improve the infrastructure of their schools. Sponsor a child & help build a future for wildlife.