Farms in east Africa have a pretty big problem - literally. Wandering elephants are a major concern and can be devastating to farmers. One solution is to dig a massive ditch and some reinforced fencing but that's hardly practical due to the expense. Unfortunately, without some kind of protection, farmers trying to defend their crops leads to frequent injuries and deaths of both farmers and elephants. Thanks to zoologist Lucy King, however, that's all about to change.
King noticed that elephants are terrified of bees, because the pain of getting stung inside their trunks is absolutely unbearable and there's little they can do to soothe themselves afterwards. Elephants instinctively avoid bees and just the sound of a buzzing bee is enough to make an elephant vacate the area immediately. She wondered if beehives suspended at regular intervals might make an effective barrier against elephants. After a wildly successful test run in 2009, The Elephants and Bees Project was officially started shortly thereafter.
Today there are active beehive fences in Kenya, Botswana, Mozambique, Tanzania, Uganda and Sri Lanka. Besides being great at keeping elephants away, the bees are also incredibly useful for pollinating crops and farmers can also harvest the honey they make for an additional revenue stream. It's truly an awesome example of using something so simple and small to solve such a big problem.
The Elephants and Bees Project is currently raising funds to expand the program even further. If you'd like to get involved, click here.
Via: This Is Colossal