Human-elephant conflict around Queen Elizabeth National Park is no news in Western Uganda. Local farmer Mohamood Mwapiri says "Elephants from the park have raided my fields for beans, maize and matooke. When they come to eat they also destroy everything. At its worst, the effect was close to famine. We had nothing to eat and nothing to sell – they ate or destroyed all we had."
The new fences have been developed since the discovery that elephants don't like bees and avoided acacia trees that held hives. Several small hives have been established and connected by tripwires so that when an elephant activates the wire it disturbs the bees who then chase the elephants away. The bees will also help pollenate crops and flowers around the area and provide the trained beekeepers with a supplementary income from their honey.
Well done to the VSPT team for working so hard to begin the journey down the beekeeping road that holds so much potential for the local communities. Getting the attention of the international press is never an easy task and we are honored to be featured on The Guardian!
Click here to learn more about the beekeeping project!