International Journal of
Biodiversity and Conservation

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. Biodivers. Conserv.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-243X
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJBC
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 609

Article in Press

A review of Human Elephant Interactions in Tanzania, Are there proper mitigation measures?

Naza E. Mmbaga

  •  Received: 29 March 2019
  •  Accepted: 30 May 2019
The success of biodiversity conservation and human societies depends intimately on the living components of natural and managed systems. Conservation of wildlife, especially elephants, is challenging under the increasing human population changes in land use systems. Land use/ land cover change (LULCC) affects the provision of ecosystem services for humans and habitat for wildlife and increase competition between humans and elephants leading to human elephant conflicts (HEC). This paper therefore aimed at reviewing different published papers, books and reports on human elephant interactions and incorporate information on HEI status, influence of LULCC on HEC and existing mitigation measures and suggesting some short term and long term management strategies. In most African countries including Tanzania, many protected areas are not fenced which has rendered local communities to use various passive and active deterrents such as ditches, local fences, wall hedges, shouting, banging tins and drums, lighting fires, throwing stones, burning chilies (Capsicum spp.) and chili fences. In spite of all these efforts, HEC is still a problem in most African countries and attempts to resolve this problem between the authorities responsible for elephant management and other stakeholders have to date not led to a widely-agreed future course of action. This paper recommends short-term HEC management measures such as crop rotations and alternative crops should be prioritized to reduce HEC in areas bordering Protected Areas. Long term measures like establishment of land-use policies that provide buffer zones and wildlife corridors that may include only limited impacts of anthropogenic activities is essential. Local people may benefit from these areas of co-existence if the mechanisms for sharing benefits for instance from wildlife tourism are well planned. The review further recommends the collaboration between Trans-boundary countries sharing elephant populations, For instance, in northern circuit Tanzanian and Kenyan governments through the ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism might set better planning for collaborative elephant management.

Keywords: Loxodonta africana, Local communities, Land use, Co-existence, Collaboration