Protecting elephants in Tanzania

We're working in Tanzania to help farmers safeguard produce without harming elephants.

Farming in elephant habitats

We’ve been working in Mikumi National Park in Tanzania for five years. It’s a natural elephant habitat which is close to local farmland. This can cause problems for farmers in the area, as the elephants often eat or crush maize crops, sometimes destroying a whole year’s income. To protect their livelihoods, farmers respond with extreme measures that can kill elephants — like poisoning crops they know elephants will eat. We’re working to provide practical solutions that keep elephants safe and protect crops.

We’re helping to reduce conflicts between elephants and farmers, using simple ideas involving bees and chili

Our solution

Together, we are creating solutions to deter elephants without harming them. With their sensitive trunks, elephants despise the smell of chili peppers. Bee stings are also painful for them, even just the sound of bees is enough to deter a wandering herd. World Animal Protection is training local farmers to build and maintain fences made of old engine oil and chili soaked rope. Beehives are also being built nearby and the honey produced is harvested for sale to support the community.

Our future work

Farmers in Mikumi are still building new fences and hanging new hives — and farmers in neighbouring communities have started doing the same. We’re also working with farmers on ways to reduce conflicts with local lions, leopards, hyena and livestock. We’re encouraging local governments and authorities to introduce similar solutions elsewhere. We also recently helped the Tanzanian government write new legislation to reduce conflict between wild animals and communities.

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