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Individual study: Uptake and performance of farm-based measures for reducing crop raiding by elephants Loxodonta africana among smallholder farms in Laikipia District, Kenya

Published source details

Graham M. & Ochieng T. (2008) Uptake and performance of farm-based measures for reducing crop raiding by elephants Loxodonta africana among smallholder farms in Laikipia District, Kenya. Oryx, 42, 76-82


This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Use chili to deter crop damage by mammals to reduce human-wildlife conflict Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

A before-and-after and site comparison study in 2003–2004 of two farming areas in Laikipia, Kenya (Graham & Ochieng 2008) found that using chili fences and chili smoke, along with loud noises, reduced raiding and crop damage by African elephants Loxodonta africana. The study does not distinguish between the effects of chilli deterrents and loud noises. After farmers began using chili fences and chili smoke, along with loud noises, the total number of crop-raiding incidents (26) and the average area of crop damage (375 m2/incident) was lower than before deterrents were used (92 incidents; 585 m2/incident). However, the difference was not tested for statistical significance. At a control site without deterrents, crop-raiding increased (total 17–166 incidents) as did crop damage (average 328 m2–421 m2/incident) during the same time period. A group of farmers within a 0.03-km2 area were provided with training and materials to deter crop-raiding elephants. Deterrents included chili fences (rope and cloth fences with chili and engine grease applied), chili smoke (chili and dung briquettes burned at night) and loud noises (bangers, banger sticks, cow bells). Some farmers also used watchtowers and torches. A second control area, of equal size and within 1 km, used no deterrents. Crop-raiding incidents and crop damage were recorded in each of the two areas before (June–December 2003) and after (June–December 2004) deterrents were introduced.

(Summarised by Anna Berthinussen)

Use chili to deter crop damage by mammals to reduce human-wildlife conflict Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

A replicated, before-and-after and site comparison study in 2004–2005 at 40 farms in Laikipia, Kenya (Graham & Ochieng 2008) found that using chili fences and chili smoke, along with loud noises, did not result in an overall reduction in crop-raiding by African elephants Loxodonta africana. The study does not distinguish between the effects of chilli deterrents and loud noises. After farmers began using chili fences and chili smoke, along with loud noises, the average number of crop-raiding incidents across all farms (2) was similar to before deterrents were used (2.5). At 10 control farms without deterrents, crop-raiding decreased (from an average of three incidents to one) during the same time period. Ten farmers in each of two areas were provided with training and materials to deter crop-raiding elephants. Deterrents included chili fences (rope and cloth fences with chili and engine grease applied), chili smoke (chili and dung briquettes burned at night) and loud noises (bangers, banger sticks, cow bells). Some farmers also used watchtowers and torches. Uptake of deterrent types varied between farms (see original paper for details). Ten control farms within each of the two areas used no deterrents. Crop-raiding incidents were recorded at all 40 farms before (February–November 2004) and after (February–November 2005) deterrents were introduced.

(Summarised by Anna Berthinussen)

Use loud noises to deter crop damage (e.g. banger sticks, drums, tins, iron sheets) by mammals to reduce human-wildlife conflict Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

A before-and-after and site comparison study in 2003–2004 of two farming areas in Laikipia, Kenya (Graham & Ochieng 2008) found that using loud noises, along with chili fences and chili smoke, reduced raiding and crop damage by African elephants Loxodonta africana. The study does not distinguish between the effects of loud noises and chilli deterrents. After farmers began using loud noises, along with chili fences and smoke, the total number of crop-raiding incidents (26) and the average area of crop damage (375 m2/incident) was lower than before deterrents were used (92 incidents; 585 m2/incident). However, the difference was not tested for statistical significance. At a control site without deterrents, crop-raiding increased (total 17–166 incidents) as did crop damage (average 328 m2–421 m2/incident) during the same time period. A group of farmers within a 0.03-km2 area were provided with training and materials to deter crop-raiding elephants. Deterrents included loud noises (bangers, banger sticks, cow bells), chili fences (rope and cloth fences with chili and engine grease applied) and chili smoke (chili and dung briquettes burned at night). Some farmers also used watchtowers and torches. A second control area, of equal size and within 1 km, used no deterrents. Crop-raiding incidents and crop damage were recorded in each of the two areas before (June–December 2003) and after (June–December 2004) deterrents were introduced.

(Summarised by Anna Berthinussen)

Use loud noises to deter crop damage (e.g. banger sticks, drums, tins, iron sheets) by mammals to reduce human-wildlife conflict Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

A replicated, before-and-after and site comparison study in 2004–2005 at 40 farms in Laikipia, Kenya (Graham & Ochieng 2008) found that using loud noises, along with chili fences and chili smoke, did not result in an overall reduction in crop-raiding by African elephants Loxodonta africana. The study does not distinguish between the effects of chilli deterrents and loud noises. After farmers began using loud noises, along with chili fences and chili smoke, the average number of crop-raiding incidents across all farms (2) was similar to before deterrents were used (2.5). At 10 control farms without deterrents, crop-raiding decreased (from an average of three incidents to one) during the same time period. Ten farmers in each of two areas were provided with training and materials to deter crop-raiding elephants. Deterrents included loud noises (bangers, banger sticks, cow bells), chili fences (rope and cloth fences with chili and engine grease applied) and chili smoke (chili and dung briquettes burned at night). Some farmers also used watchtowers and torches. Uptake of deterrent types varied between farms (see original paper for details). Ten control farms within each of the two areas used no deterrents. Crop-raiding incidents were recorded at all 40 farms before (February–November 2004) and after (February–November 2005) deterrents were introduced.

(Summarised by Anna Berthinussen)