G3G are proudly part of groupelephant.com and one of the group's primary initiatives is ERP - the preservation of at-risk Elephants and Rhinos, through alleviation of poverty among rural People in areas adjacent to the threatened species, or ERP, if you will. Through the 911 elephant program, ERP is committed to ensuring non lethal methods are found to protect elephants and rhinos and back in April we promoted their efforts to relocate up to 27 elephants in Mozambique to safety.
The elephants were in an unprotected area populated by rural farmers and villages - often an explosive situation with elephants and humans clashing leading to tragedies on both sides. As so many of you have generously donated to the program, we wanted to give you an update on what has been going on with the herd.
As planning commenced, ERP dedicated a number of hours flying to the region and with every flight, more elephants were found. The situation was far bigger than initially thought and they soon realised that they would need to look at alternative means of dealing with the human wildlife conflict in the region.
The decision has therefore been made not to relocate the herd, but rather to shift the focus of the project more into the “people” side of ERP and embark on a community engagement program. They will communicate with village headman, ascertain the direct extent of their concerns with the elephants, and implement measures to help protect their livelihoods from damage by these animals. In exchange, they will help ERP to protect the elephants from poaching and minimise the human wildlife conflict.
Some interventions that ERP plan to implement include educating people about elephant behaviour, securing crops through the use of beeline fences, as well as securing access to drinking water that will not expose the community or their livestock to danger from elephants that rely on the same water resources.
ERP, and all of groupelephant.com, greatly appreciate your contribution and support to this program so far and hope that you will be willing to continue to support ERP as they embark in this new direction.