Animals have a nature to migrate from place to place rather than stay at one place for longer durations. Such seasonal migrations are facilitated by these corridors. They are crucial for ecological balance and to avoid genetic adaptation to a specific region.
Human-Wildlife Conflict is a multifaceted issue as it is very evident that there is suffering on both sides. On one hand we see extinction of different species and their loss of habitat while on the other we see many people losing their lives or means of livelihood.
Last year we were contacted by Selco Foundation regarding increasing crop raiding issues in Assam due to elephant intrusion. Assam being rich in biodiversity, has always been a zone with human wildlife conflicts. Every year at least 30-40 people in Assam lose their lives due to these conflicts and dozens of elephants are killed in retaliation. This conflict is going since decades and is increasing year after year due to decrease in forest cover.
The crop raiding problem faced by the village farmers was severe and needed urgent solution. The NGO bought 10 devices from us to do a pilot in high conflict zones. The pilot project was so successful that they placed an order of 80 devices the very next season. Extremely happy with the results, the farmers were ready to pay their share for the devices instead of just relying on the NGO for funds. The NGO and farmers had great things to say about their experience.
Quoting their feedback, “We installed ANIDERS along the river bank because elephant herds used to enter the farmlands after crossing the river. Once we installed ANIDERS, elephant herds tried to enter the farmlands, but they got scared and returned to jungle every time because of ANIDERS’s light and sound alarm. Since the installation of this device, there has been no damage reported and the crops have been safe ever since.
Last year, farmers lost up to 4 bighas of paddy due to crop raiding by elephants. But this year, after ANIDERS installation, his fields are not only safe, but he is also able to save Rs. 7000, which is a big deal for a small-scale farmer. On average these farmers are able to save Rs. 14,000 each.
Interestingly, ANIDERS is not only saving us from elephant intrusions but it is also protecting us from thieves. This area used to report theft during nighttime, but post ANIDERS installation, reported thefts have drastically reduced as ANIDERS triggers an alarm in case there is any intrusion detected.”
Feedbacks like these give us motivation to keep working towards our goals and make us believe that we are moving in the right direction. We, at Kyari Innovations, have took it upon ourselves to innovate more such innovative solutions to help the environment and people alike.
A heard of Elephants was a cause of worry for the farmers of Kishanpur for past 6 months. The elephants were entering fields every night and were destroying the crops sown by the farmers. This lead to many sleepless nights for the farmers as they had to protect their fields from elephant intrusions overnight. Farmers incurred huge losses as the crop productivity declined drastically. Electric fences could be installed, but that would take months for approvals and huge installation costs would be required.
District Forest Officer of Haldwani Mr. Chandershekhar Sanwal approached us with this problem in January this year with very high hopes. It was time to prove ANIDERS’s worth in the hour of need. We quickly assembled 2 units of ANIDERS and started off for Haldwani the very next day.
As we talked to the villagers, we got to know how adverse the conditions had been the past few months. Elephants intruded there fields on daily basis and were now totally immune to the tricks that villagers once used to drive the elephants away.
After analyzing the landscape around the farms, we installed 2 units of ANIDERS, one on each pathway of elephants from where they entered the fields. As the device is easy to install and handle, we trained the villagers on how the device could be operated and fixed if needed. Range officer Mrs. Shalini Joshi and her team were really supportive throughout the process of installation.
As the devices were installed, we left for the day and waited for the night to settle in, when the movement of elephants would start.
After a week we got a call from the Pradhan of Kishanpur (Village head), he had excitement in his voice and gratitude in his words. He told us that no elephant dared to enter the field since ANIDERS’s installation. Whenever the elephants came towards the field, ANIDERS would drive them away by triggering the alarm system.
The problem that was troubling the farmers since 6 months vanished by the installation of just 2 devices. The villagers are highly satisfied by the results and wish to buy more units to secure the complete from wild animal’s intrusions.
The results were astonishing and this news spread quite fast. Local dailies covered this incident and wrote articles of triumph about ANIDERS. Amar Ujala, a leading newspaper daily in India, came forward and put down the story behind ANIDERS.
While the whole nation is mourning over the gruesome killing of an innocent elephant and her unborn child, there is a key information that we all are missing out in this whole incident. It’s the fact that the elephant ate a pineapple stuffed with cracker. Some source say that the pineapple was fed to her by locals, others say that she mistakenly ate it as it was kept as a bait for the wild boars. Either ways, we cannot ignore the fact that such pineapples filled with firecrackers are regularly used by locals as bait to lure animals and kill them in order to take revenge from them for crop destruction. These innocent wild animals intrude in the farmlands of locals in search of food and fall prey to such heinous traps.
Since ages these practices are being followed by locals everywhere. Wild animals have been a subject of torment in one way or the other and all this is because there is no way for the farmers to protect their farmlands from such wild animals.
Electric fencing hardly ever protects a farm, walls cannot be created everywhere, trenches cannot be dug everywhere, and humans cannot physically guard their fields all the time. These failures to protect crop has led to the use of such deadly practices by farmers. Farmers are also desperate because their lively hood depends on these crops. A solution is needed that can protect the crops while ensuring the safety of wild animals. And there is a solution. ANIDERS- Animal Intrusion Detection and Repellent System.
This device when installed in the periphery of a farmland senses the approaching wild animal and triggers a light and sound alarm. As soon as the wild animal hears the alarm, they quickly run away from the fields. This device uses the element of surprise to scare the animal away without physically inflicting any harm on the animal. Since this device works on infrared sensing, there is no need to create physical barriers like fences, walls or trenches. This practice is ensuring that animal corridors stay protected.
Not only pan India, this device is saving animal lives and protecting the farms across globe – Africa, Malaysia, Bhutan. Organizations like WWF India, WII, IUCN, Elephant without Borders and UNDP have been installing ANIDERS Pan India on smaller scales. Forest departments of states like Uttarakhand, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh are proactively installing this device in their problem regions.
When the solution is there, then why is there still a delay to implement it?
It’s the right time when such innovations should be given a chance to showcase their potential. The world is looking at us, how we deal with such crisis is what matters the most. Old ways must be replaced by new tech solutions. Government and farmers have to trust such technologies because they are the future.
Saving the wildlife is the need of the hour. Each animal death is adding up to the impact that would be seen few years from now. We can save this from happening by being proactive TODAY.