Human wildlife conflict is a real concern for farmers bordering the Arusha National Park. Installing beehives to stop elephants is not enough to keep them out of the farm fields. Beehives need regular attention to remain productive and useful. Moses Ryakitimbo determined that servicing the beehives monthly is about right.
About eighteen months ago farmers in this area near Arusha, Tanzania were in real trouble. Elephants from the protected area found maize and other crops rather tasty. Entire herds descended on the farms leaving little for the farmers.
Moses heard about their plight. Being the sort of man who cares much about wildlife and humans he wanted to help. He evaluated the situation and learned that in other countries bees where the answer.
Unlike we’ve been told elephants aren’t afraid of mice, they’re afraid of bees. An elephant has tons of nerve endings in the trunk making a bee sting most painful.
Moses reached out to us for support to build his first beehives. Phase One was a great success. This first beehive fence was strategically placed and the elephants stopped coming. The five farmers impacted by this first beehive fence were amazed… and of course very grateful.
For the first time in years they had no crop damage. For the first time in years no elephant or human was injured or killed.
Now Moses was of course inundated with requests for beehive fences. After sponsoring 56 beehives an entire grouping of small farms is now being protected from invading elephants.
However, Moses is thorough. He checks up with his farmers and visits the beehives. Phase ONE had its problems. These beehives had been constructed differently. Also insects were getting into some of the hives. True to form Moses and his team came up with solutions.
The big take away has been… installing beehives to stop elephants isn’t enough… monthly maintenance is an absolute must to keep the bees happy and doing their job.
Just $11.50 a month keeps one beehive healthy and those elephants away.
For more details here is Moses’ report for August 2020
During our trip to Lendoya village we were able to do the following:
- Paint all 112 poles with black crude oil. Fighting destructive insects finding their way to the beehives.
- Repair 4 beehives that bee’s had left. Due to insects invasion. And now it’s just the second day a new group of bee’s are back and all four beehives are occupied again.
- Strengthen four poles for beehives – number 47, 55, 56 – with new cementing.
- We met two farmers among the 7 who are protected by the beehive fences. And they advised that we have to do the honey harvest next month for 10-15 beehives.(At the same time inspected a new area for the next ten beehives).
- According to the current research we did, a total of 36 more beehives are needed.
- GOOD RESULTS:
- The new (10) Phase ONE beehives that were upgraded, 6 already have bee’s with new groups. (Nice improvement for a new location.)
- Before the project. There were seven (7) short -cut roads created by wild animals crossing into all seven farms owned by the farmers, but now all roads are no more. The smell from the bee’s chased all wild animals crossing into the farms away.
Oh yes, and for those of you who might be wondering can the elephants and other wildlife still get through this area? Yes, Moses and his team left corridors that would not impact farm crops open for wildlife movement.
Great job Moses!
You ready to get involved with this ongoing successful project?