Friday, April 9, 2010

Can Elephants and Humans Coexist Peacefully?

African elephants roam freely in Uganda's national parks, but they often leave these boundaries and venture into human settlements. There, they can cause big problems by raiding crops and food stores, destroying fences and huts, trampling property, and even killing people. Human Elephant Conflict has become a big issue in northern Uganda as people return home to their villages from IDP camps after the long conflict. Although elephants affect people's livelihoods and food security, there are simple and effective ways to ensure humans and elephants live together peacefully.

The Wildlife Clubs of Uganda is taking action. Together with the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) and Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), we're leading efforts to train local communities in effective mitigation measures. On April 7 and 8, we held a workshop in Murchison Falls National Park for local district leaders from Amuru and Adjumani on the subject. One of the best ways to protect crop gardens is to plant chili peppers. Elephants are naturally deterred by the scent of chili, so if farmers plant a ring of chili peppers around their gardens, elephants will often stay away. Farmers can also burn chili, build simple fences with rope smeared with chili infused grease, and burn elephant dung. Cultivating beehives is also effective because elephants are fearful of bees. For more information on chili and other actions, please visit the Elephant Pepper Trust at

Reporting elephant movement and damage is also important. With the right data on elephant behavior, we can begin to better predict where elephants will move in a particular region and when. This will allow villages to be prepared and even recognize hotspots where elephants are particularly prevalent. Therefore, we're encouraging village and district leaders to report all elephant damage to the UWA. Also, this month the Wildlife Conservation Society will be attaching satellite tracking collars to four elephants in northern Uganda. The collars are harmless to the elephants but will allow us to persistently track their movement.

At the Wildlife Clubs, we believe elephants and humans can coexist peacefully. But it will take action and understanding on the part of local communities and government. The Wildlife Clubs is taking its part in addressing this issue and ensure peace and security in northern Uganda for the future.

Gulu, Uganda

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Wildlife Clubs Holds Student Camp in Murchison Falls National Park

Wildlife Clubs held a camp for over 40 students in Murchison Falls National Park from March 16 to 19, 2010. In addition to educating youth about the environment and natural resources, the camp taught students about HIV/AIDS knowledge and prevention, positive living, and good decision making.

Check out more pictures of the camp at:

The camp was a lot of fun! We toured Murchison Falls and saw many animals including elephants, lions, hippos, Uganda cob, and giraffe. We also took a trip to the top of the mighty waterfall, went to the western part of the park near the delta, and took a guided nature walk near the Nile River.

For many of the students, this was their first visit to a national park in Uganda and their first experience seeing wildlife in a natural setting. Wildlife Clubs strives to involved youth in protecting the environment and natural resources, so Uganda can have a stable and healthy future.

Stay tuned to hear about future activities, including camps, trips, competitions, and a visit to your school!


Welcome to the new Wildlife Clubs Blog!

This blog will be a new format for publicizing activities and information about Wildlife Clubs of Uganda. We'll share updates, photos, stories from our youth clubs, camps, field activities, competitions, and everything else. We look forward to a vibrant online presence and an open dialog with Ugandan youth committed to environmental conservation. In the meantime, take a look at our web photo gallery at

Wildlife Clubs of Uganda
Gulu Regional Office