The most recent reports are of elephants rampaging in Kolahun, Lofa County.
These wildlife are reported to be impeding the movements of people within these regions, and hindering them from going about their normal farming activities.
On Thursday, June 15, 2017, citizens of Lofa County, particularly, Kolahun reported that elephants were destroying their farms and they were not able to do their normal agriculture activities due to the rampage.
The citizens complained to the management of the Forestry Development Authority that in spite of the elephant raiding their crops they could not react to the wildlife invasion due to restrictions placed on killing wildlife in Liberia.
FDA Managing Darlington Tuagben has described the elephant attack as unfortunate noting that the entity has already sent a team to the county to handle the situation.
He said the government of Liberia through the FDA is pleased that there was no casualty during the elephant invasion.
“It is so unfortunate that we occasionally experience the invasion by wildlife in some of these areas. Fortunately for us as government, there was no casualty,” Tuagben noted.
According to him, the observation team from the FDA would be meeting with those affected by the invasion as well as putting in place measures to avoid future occurrence of such attack by wildlife.
He told Front Page Africa at the start of the week that the latest Kolahun’s attack by elephants has driven the FDA attention to creating more awareness on human-wildlife co-existence.
Tuagben pointed out Liberia as not being unique in addressing circumstances relating to human-elephant conflict which he believes is not only a problem for the West African nation, but the world at large.
The FDA Managing Director believes, the problem created by these wildlife at some agriculture sites in Liberia are a result of their survival.
He said most of these animals have been pushed away from their original dwelling by farmers who are expanding their agriculture activities into the deep forest region which is encroaching on wildlife habitats.
“As the population increases, development increases and expansion of human lives go on, so this is what has been happening.”
You know the unique habitats of these animals are in the forest but you know we need to survive; we need to expand our activities and some of the farming have been pushing them out of their areas,” Tuagben said.
Mr. Tuagben further stated that the FDA is now working along with its partners in finding amicable ways to stop wildlife invasions in rural Liberia, but registered that the process would not be immediate.
He said it is possible for human and wildlife to live together but this process would be worked out in the not too distance future.
Meanwhile, Tuagben has named budgetary constraint as a major factor responsible for delay in the implementation of the FDA key forest plans in Liberia.