Human-Wildlife Conflict and Solutions
As the human population expands, natural wild places are reduced. This means that people and wildlife are increasingly coming into conflict over living space and food. Animals may eat crops or livestock, resulting in people losing food, income and perhaps even their lives as they defend their properties. And the animals themselves may be killed in the process or in retaliation.
Thankfully, conservationists are constantly looking for ways to prevent this conflict. Their solutions are often highly creative and imaginative, with many utilising the latest technologies. Most importantly, they involve local people.
I remember from university, where it was constantly emphasised, that involving the local community in any conservation initiative is of the upmost importance, otherwise it is likely to fail. The best human-wildlife conflict solutions are those that benefit animals and the local communities, who can change their opinion of the 'problem' animals and become supporters of their conservation, as well as developing sustainable livelihoods for themselves. These projects are often the ones that warm the heart of this compassionate, yet despairing, conservationist.