Researchers at the University of Oxford, in collaboration with Save the Elephants, Elephants Alive and Witwatersrand University, have found that African honeybees act as a mitigation method for elephant impact on large trees.
The team used the marula tree -a favourite amongst elephants - and tested the levels of impact such as trees having their bark stripped, branches snapped or even being toppled over. This was the first study to analyse the use of a combination of both active and dummy beehives as a mitigation method.
It is known that elephants actively avoid contact with honeybees, staying clear of crop fields surrounded by beehive fence-lines and moving away from the sounds of swarming honeybees. Whilst the financial cost and maintenance required for the beehive mitigation method are greater than that or wire-netting, the beehives can provide honest as an additive benefit on a small-scale usage level.
To read the full paper, published in Biological Conservation, visit: http://elephantsandbees.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/Cook-et-al-2017-K...