Chad Beehive Fences
Save-Elephants has developed a beehive fence project in Monts de Lam, in the Southwest of Chad. The beehive fence project started in 2015 with 50 beehives and 50 dummy hives. In 2016 a further 100 hives were erected, and are being paired with 100 dummy hives as per our Elephants and Bees beehive fence construction manual suggestions. The Save-Elephants project collaborates with a local small NGO called A.L.C.P. (Association for the Fight Against the Poverty) and its president Mr Samuel Benou.
The beehive fences have been used on several small holder farms of maize, cotton, ground nuts and sorghum and the farmers have reported that on several occasions the elephants have avoided entering their farms and get angry when confronted by the bees.
The bees colonized the hives naturally, and were able to provide the farms with protection from elephants soon after the fence had been constructed. After one year between 15-20 litres of honey was being harvested per hive. Initially the honey was left entirely for the farmers who built the beehive fences, however moving forwards some of the harvested honey will be kept for the organisations (A.L.C.P & Save-Elephants) to process and sell in the capital city N’Djamena and city of Mondou, for local and international people to gain further awareness of the project.
Unfortunately, it was observed that honey was sometimes stolen from some of the more remote fields. To find out more about the work Arthur and his team are doing to protect elephants in Chad please look at their website.
The Greater Zakouma Ecosystem in Chad is a haven for both Central and West African wildlife. The elephant population in this area was decimated by poaching (95% of the population was killed between 2002 and 2010). Due to anti-poaching initiatives by African Parks in partnership with the government of Chad, elephant and other wildlife numbers are on the rise.
However this in turn has seen an increase of elephant crop-raiding in farming communities living adjacent to Zakouma National Park. To limit the arising human-elephant conflict (HEC), the organisation recently constructed a pilot beehive fence with the help of community members. If successful they plan to expand the project to other areas in Zakouma and hope it can be a model to address HEC in Chad.