This post was originally published at Naija AgroNet and has been republished with permission.
Experts have said that humans and wildlife can mutually co-existence, reports NaijaAgroNet.
Several wildlife species, NaijaAgroNet gathered may cause significant damage to crops and livestock systems, threatening peoples’ food security, safety and well-being, which experts see as in extreme cases, attacks by wildlife species such as elephants and crocodiles can cause human injuries and death.
The Food and Agriculture Organisation latest publication with focus on wildlife, noted that human-wildlife conflicts have become more frequent and severe particularly in Africa, due to increasing competition for land in previously wild and uninhabited areas.
“This is often the result of human population growth, increasing demand for natural resources, and growing pressure for access to land, such as expansion of transport routes, agriculture and industries,” part of the report read.
NaijaAgroNetreports that more specifically, the publication stressed that in central and southern Africa, wildlife and people will continue to share landscapes and resources with conflicts likely to worsen unless actions are taken.
In this regard, FAO said that the French Agricultural Research Centre for International Development (CIRAD) and other partners developed the first Human-Wildlife Conflict (HWC) toolbox, which has helped a local community in Gabon’s Cristal Mount National Park.
The report further noted that local farmers in this area were particularly frustrated by the fact that animals such as cane rats, roan antelopes, bush pigs and elephants, were destroying their entire crops, and thus threatening their livelihoods. At the same time, laws prohibited these farmers from taking action by hunting the protected animals either for meat or to protect their crops.
However, the solutions offered by the toolkit included fencing the plantations to block animals from reaching the crops, lighting fires or making noises to scare the animals away, and posting guards to keep watch on plantations at night – measures that were relatively easy and inexpensive to implement.
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