FRONTIER HABITATS- Project Go Back
My Elephant in My Village
Defining strategies for mitigation of human-elephant conflict across landscapes
Continuing from the Elephant in the Town Commons project, this project will create site-specific solutions to mitigate human-elephant conflict. For this purpose, three distinct villages are chosen that vary is their location, level of urbanisation and familiarity of elephant behaviour.
1. The enclosure village:
These small and remote villages are located within large protected areas. They have limited electricity and are dependent on rains for irrigation. Elephants mostly enter these villages to access ponds and crop-raiding islimited mainly to the harvest season. Although these villages have the highest level of interaction with elephants, they have the least levels of conflict as they are more adept in dealing with elephants.
2. The peripheral village:
These villages are fairly large in size and are situated on the border of forested habitats. Farmers, here, have access to irrigation facilities enabling them to plant subsistence as well as commercial crops. The level of conflict due to crop raiding is moderate as elephants can easily access these villages.
3. The peri-urban village:
Peri-urban villages are villages that are undergoing rapid transformations due to their proximity to urban centres. They are well irrigated through a system of canals and bore wells, allowing for the production of commercial and subsistence crops year round. Conflict levels are much higher here as people are unaware of how to respond to elephants. This has resulted in villagers requesting that these elephants be captured.
For the first year, this project will be carried out in three villages: Palayam, Udubarani and Shanbhognahalli. Palayam and Udubarani are both situated in Tamil Nadu and constitute an enclosure village and a peripheral village, respectively. Shanbhognahalli, in Karnataka, is an example of a village that is rapidly developing due to its connectivity to urban resources.
In order to come up with solutions that will work for each village, we will work with local volunteers: training them to monitor elephants, set up and maintain physical barriers at strategic entry points in villages, and find unique solutions to prevent loss of life and property to elephants and humans.