Assessment on the Level of Human-Elephant Conflict and Possible Mitigation Measures in and around Chebra Churchura National Park, Ethiopia
Chebera Churchura National Park is boarded by 26 Peasant Associations (PA) (the smallest administrative unit in Ethiopia). Mixed agricultural practices are the sole livelihood of the majority of the inhabitants around the park. When the dry period is prolonged, households and youngsters move cattle to Park were grass and water is available. In recent years, the erratic and intermittent rain season, crop failure and unsatisfactory production predisposed the already vulnerable women headed households and deprived local community members to look the park as an indispensable alternative means of livelihood. Consequently, significant number of people visits the park, cut trees and bushes for agricultural land, collect fuel and construction wood and set unmanageable wildfire while collecting honey and spices from the park.
These unmanaged actions cause tremendous threat to the park and its wildlife and resulted in deforestation, floristic diversity deterioration and habitat destruction, which eventually results in reduction of the precious elephant habitats and aggravating human-elephant conflict. Moreover, human and livestock death and injury and crop raid by elephants have been growing rapidly in adjacent boarder areas. The elephant population in CCNP is on the rise, the potential of increasing conflict is a concern for the long-term co-existence between local communities and elephants.
Thus, based on the findings of the previous project the aim of this project mainly focuses on developing conservation management plan to the elephant-human conflict and provision of trainings on proper implementation of the mitigation measures and awareness creation/raising to local communities around the park on issues such as values and sustainable utilization of natural resources and environmental educations from primary schools’ level to community leaders and local administrators. The training will be given by expecting reducing their frenzying activities sustainably and the risk mentioned and ensures sustainable co-existence between local communities and elephants.