In an interview broadcast this morning on Breakfast, Childfund CEO Paul Brown discussed how an elephant proof fence is changing the lives of Zambians living in Luangwa as part of of the Secure Futures project.
You can find more information on the Fence in the Q & A below.
Why are the fences needed?
Only 20 per cent of crops grown are harvested, the rest are destroyed by animals - elephants, baboons, wild pigs. During the growing season people move out into makeshift huts in the fields. They spend all day working in the fields and all night scaring animals away. Not only do they face the risk of animal attack but also greater exposure to malaria.
The most serious animal attacks are from elephants with nine people having died in the last five years. The latest death was June this year.
Visit the Secure Futures appeal page and donate to make a difference to 1500 families in Zambia.
How big is the fence?
There are two fences one enclosing 355ha and one enclosing 514ha - a total of 869ha; about the size of two large NZ farms. Section 1 is 7600 metres and section 2 is 8900 metres; a total of 17km in length. It would be like building a fence around the Auckland Domain more than 12 times.
How do the fences work?
The fences are 1.8 m tall and solar powered. The local community will be trained to maintain it.
How will it affect wild animals?
The fence is designed to give a short sharp shock to deter animals not to harm them. In fact, if elephants receive too much of a shock they have been known to become enraged and destroy electric fences. In addition, the Zambia Environmental Management Agency is carrying out an environmental assessment to ensure animals’ natural migration routes and behaviour is not affected. The fence is being designed with animals and people in mind.
Visit our Secure Futures appeal page and donate to make a difference to 1500 families in Zambia.