This project will increase our understanding of the social & ecological needs of male elephants, enabling us to better conserve them & protect rural communities livelihoods. Male elephants cause the most damage to human property, are the first to be targeted by hunters & poachers due to their large tusk, & are the least understood. We will study the male elephants of the Makgadikgadiki, Botswana, a population dominated by males, including following 10 elephants through satellite radio collars.
There are less than half a million African savannah elephants left. As humans populations increase, there is growing contact between wildlife and humans. Whilst we have a good understanding of female elephants social and ecological needs, we know little about male elephants, in particular their social needs. Throughout their range male elephants are the main crop raiders, without a deeper understanding of males we shall fail to conserve elephants & protect rural communities living alongside.
Elephants for Africa's research aims to decrease human-elephant conflict and conserve the African elephant. With local field staff we work with four rural communities bordering a national park to understand their interactions with elephants, and applying the knowledge we have of the behaviour of the male elephants in the region limit the cost of living alongside wildlife whilst increasing the opportunities to benefit.
Information on changes in elephant behaviour will help us update the recommendations we give to people during our 'Living with Elephants' workshops, developed to facilitate humans and elephants to live side-by-side. At the same time, the results will provide important information to be considered in the management of hunting elephants in Botswana e.g. creating low-risk areas for elephants and considering distances to local villages when developing land-use plans.
This project has provided additional documentation in a PDF file (projdoc.pdf).
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