Makueni farmers discover honey tastes sweeter when it keeps Elephants away

November 25, 2016 4:08 pm
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Resident harvesting honey in Makueni/JEREMIAH WAKAYA
Resident harvesting honey in Makueni/JEREMIAH WAKAYA

, MAKUENI, Kenya, Nov 25 — Farmers in Iviani and Kyusiani villages in Makueni county have a reason to smile following the introduction of beehive fences that have helped keep elephants out of their farms.

The joint initiative between the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust and British Airways, being undertaken at the Mtito Andei area on farms bordering the Tsavo East National Park has proven to be at least 80 per cent effective with 8 out of every 10 elephants staying out of the farms fenced off by beehives.

According to the airline’s Business Development Manager for Kenya, Sophie Onyango, the project has achieved the much sought after solution to human-wildlife conflict as it has proven to be beneficial to both the farmers and the wildlife.

Farmers who spoke to Capital FM News expressed their joy at the benefits accrued from the beehive fences with a kilo of honey said to be going for at least Sh300.

In 2016 alone, 2.6 kms of beehive fence has been set up; bringing the total number of beehives put up in the villages to 131.

Beehive fencing has been described by conservationists as the most eco-friendly way to keep wildlife from straying into human settlements since it does not seal-off migration corridors.

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