Conflict between Elephants and Residents, Electric Fencing may be a solution F

19 February 2020

Disappearing habitat and the shortage of ration bring the wild elephants into conflict with local people in Myanmar. As the consequences, there is conflict from crop raiding, injuries and deaths to humans caused by elephants, and elephants being killed by humans for reasons other than ivory and habitat degradation. 

Human-Elephant Peace project for harmony living of human and elephants has implemented by Grow Back for Posterity. GBP is a non-profit organization collaborating with local communities, government, national and international CSOs and other stakeholders to protect nature and wildlife in Myanmar. 

GBP is now initiating new project named “Human-Elephant Peace Treaty Program” in collaboration with its partner organizations including Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Conservation, Elephant Family, Compass Films, Shared Earth Foundation, U.S Fish and Wildlife Service as well as Darwin Initiative. One of the ways to reduce the conflict between wild elephants and human is educating the residents in rural areas for the awareness of wildlife and guiding them to protect their farms without threating or hurting this wildlife. 

U Aung Myo Chit, Chairman, Grow Back for Posterity  “Electric Fencing is a way of solving for reducing the conflicts between elephants and human and stay together peacefully and harmoniously. But if the farmers use wrongly the electric fencing way, it can fatal not only elephants but also other animals and even human. We has implemented the electric fencing to protect the farms in 9 villages in collaboration with the villagers and all the 9 areas of electric fencing are still unbreakable since 2015 to till now. We are alternatively monitoring all the villages. All the 9 areas are funded and supported by our organization, Grow Back for Posterity (GBP). 

But there are many spots in Myanmar where require the electric fencing to protect their farms. And of course, we can’t afford to provide all these farms and farmers. But in coming years, we will only give the technology to the farmers. And we are also negotiating with the government officials that the farmers can get the loan for their own electric fencing. They would cost 900,000 kyats in estimate for 5 to 10 acres but only 1.5 million kyats for 40 acres. 

But, we warn the farmers as much as we can not to do this electric fencing of their own and to follow our technologies and regulations. We are also planning to make a documentary video to use in providing education for the farmers. The educating processes will also be carried out in the villages. It’s better if we can do the wildlife tourism for these wild elephants. We can get the tourism income for the country and also for the residents. So, the residents will also love to conserve these elephants.”

U Ye Nandar Aung, Vice Chairman, Grow Back for Posterity “Mainly, we are cooperating with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Conservation and Myanmar Police Force has formed the police force for forestry in Myanmar to control the wildlife crime and to conserve the wildlife and nature. We are cooperating with them. These cooperating organizations are exposing the rural areas where the wild elephants used to settle. If any residents informed us, we go and solve the situations and lead these elephants back to the forest.”

GBP has started Human-Elephant Peace project since 2015 to end conflict between elephants and humans. They are doing education programs for the rural public in almost all areas in Myanmar where the elephants are habiting including Yangon, Bago, and Ayeyawaddy, Mandalay, Magway, Sagaing as well as Tanintharyi Regions.

Phyo Thi
Photo Credit - Grow Back for Posterity