The north of the Lake Indawgyi Biosphere Reserve is located in an elephant migration corridor and connects forest areas that are vital for the elephants’ survival. For several months of the year, the animals stay within the reserve. During this time, conflicts with the local population occur again and again when the elephants invade the fields and destroy the harvest.

Currently, a herd of six elephants is staying in the immediate neighbourhood of a village. Normally, the animals only arrive in November or December. This year, they have been here since July. This is problematic because the farmers’ fields are not yet harvested at this point and the animals cause much more damage. It’s unclear why the elephants are earlier than usual this year. Possible causes could be changes in their habitat due to climate change or military activities, which drive the animals out of their environment and force them to look for new spaces for their herds.

In order to avoid human-elephant conflicts, we offer trainings for the local population in the affected villages and work together to develop locally adapted solutions in the interest of both humans and animals. We also collect data on migration routes, population size and composition, as well as precise information on possible threats (e.g. poaching) in order to develop an action plan.

More about our work at Lake Indawgyi: