You are on page 1of 25

PGDM

(Batch 2011-13)

A study on Human Elephant Conflict and the trend over a period of 5 years in 4 Divisions of Assam
Kingshuk Borah KHR2011PGDM21F046 Prof Preeti Narendra

WORLD WIDE FUND FOR NATURE

1

Summary:
The global loss of wild habitats and the expansion of human populations have intensified conflicts between people and wildlife. Intensifying land uses have led to degradation, fragmentation and loss of elephant habitat, and have driven elephants into contact with people, particularly in cultivated areas. Conflict between elephants and people results when elephants feed on crops, destroy farms or homes, or injure or kill people, and when people retaliate against these losses. Sonitpur District, in the state of Assam in north-east India, was referred to as a ground zero for Human elephant conflict in 2004. An estimated 60% of the elephants in Sonitpur and adjoining districts have disappeared since 1999-2004 (many from poisoning), and there have been many human deaths caused by elephants. Finding ways for people and elephants to coexist was, therefore critical to the success of conservation efforts that seek to balance the needs of people and wildlife of Sonitpur district. This was when WWF stepped in and undertook projects in 2004 to create a solution to rising HEC over the Sonitpur district. The project undertaken by WWF was a success and there have been much improvement in conditions then it was before. They decided to expand themselves in the nearby districts where there have been frequent news of HEC and they expanded their work to Udalguri district in 2009. WWF found success and they managed to improve the conditions of HEC over Udalguri district too. The vision of WWF was to find a solution to the rise of HEC over whole of Northeast India. They have now decided to expand there project over 4 major districts/division of Assam viz. Jorhat, Golaghat, Dhemaji and Lakhimpur. They wanted to have an overview of the present conditions of HEC over these 4 districts and I was assigned a job to collect data from all these 4 Divisions and report it to them. The data collected from these 4 divisions might give them a brief overview of the present scenario and past scenario and certain analysis of data were made which might be helpful to them. An overview is given to them about the present condition out there by collecting information from local resources Forest officials of these 4 districts. Finally certain recommendation about where WWF could establish their base to continue their further work on this HEC in Assam is also suggested.

Dr. Anupam Sarmah

2

Jamshyd N. India Tel : 011.com. Tezpur 784 001 anupamsarmah@gmail. Lodi Estate. S. Divyabhanusinh Chavda Vice President: Mr. Phone +91 3712 260132 Head. He undertook a study entitled ‘A study on Human Elephant Conflict and the trend over a period of 5 years in 4 Divisions of Assam’ with WWF India. India successfully completed his month long internship with NBL Program of WWF India at Tezpur. Tarun Das Mr. WWF-India Dated 23.Parvati Nagar. Assam. Irani Mr. Navi Mumbai.01. Kingshuk Borah. P. I wish him all the success. Godrej Mr. New Delhi – 110 003. (Anupam Sarmah) Head. a PGDM student of Institute for Technology and Management (ITM). Assam Landscapes TRUSTEES President: Dr. Pratap Singh Rane Admiral (Retd) Madhvendra Singh Dr. Jamshed J.O.41504777/4778 3 . Theodore Baskaran WWF – India Secretariat Pirojsha Godrej National Conservation Centre 172 – B. Assam Landscapes.2012 TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN This is to certify that Mr.

Preeti Narendra: She has been my faculty guide and she have guided me in completing my project report and have also helped me throughout my project with any kind of advice and suggestions. He assigned me with my task and guided me throughout the whole project. Lakhimpur & Dhemaji Divisions: The main objective of my project was collection of data from these offices and every officials of these divisions have lend me a helping hand in disclosing data to me for my project.  Prof.  Hiten Kumar Baishya: He has helped me in understanding the need of various projects and important facts about the Forest divisions and structure of Forest department along with reference of officials that has made my work easy.ACKNOWLEDGEMENT I would like to thank the following peoples who have helped me a lot and guided me through my NGO project under WWF:  Dr. Golaghat.  DFO of Jorhat. Anupam sarmah: He has been my mentor and guide for my NGO. I am thankful to all of them without which my project would not have been successful. 4 .

ABBREVIATIONS: NBL: North Bank Landscape HEC: Human Elephant Conflicts WWF: World Wide Fund for Nature SML: Satpura Maikal TAL: Terai Arc KKL: Kaziranga Karbi Anglong KCL: Kanchendzonga Landscape AREAS: Asian Rhino and Elephant Action Strategy ADS: Anti Depredition Squad GPS: Global Positioning System NRL: Numaligarh refinery Limited DFO: Divisional Forest Officer 5 .

2 WWF's Mission Statement 1.4 Analysis of data collection 2. References/ Bibliography Page Numbe r 8-10 8 8 8 9 10 11-22 11 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 11 16 16 17 17 18 19 20 22 23 24 24 25 6 . Project Activities 2.4. North East India 2.1 Description of the main project undertaken by WWF 2.Table of Contents Serial Numb er 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Name of Topic 1.4 Recent activities in WWF Assam 2.3(a) Damage of Crop.5(c) Damage of Crop.1 Human Elephant Conflicts (HEC) management in Sonitpur district of Assam North Bank Landscape (NBL). Properties etc caused by wild elephant in Golaghat division 2.3 Activities undertaken by WWF.1 Death of Elephants over various Divisions since 2005 to 2011 2.4.2 Major Objective of one month Project in WWF 2.1 Overall Conclusion 3.3(b) Damage of Crop.3 Major task assigned at WWF 2.4.India 1.1.2 Death of Human over various Divisions since 2005 to 2011 2.2 Recommendations to WWF 4.4. Learning accumulated 5.2 Main Objectives of WWF India 1.1 History of WWF 1. Introduction 1. Properties etc caused by Wild Elephants in Dhemaji and Lakhimpur Division 2.4. Properties etc caused by wild elephant in Jorhat Division 3.

1 Map of North Bank Landscape Fig. Properties etc caused by Wild Elephants in Dhemaji and Lakhimpur Division Fig.7-a: Percentage of conflicts in areas affected by wild elephant for the year 2008 Fig.5: Death of Human over various Divisions due to HEC since 2005 to 2011 Fig.6: Damage of Crop. 3 Map showing location of the ADS Fig.7-c: Percentage of conflicts in areas affected by wild elephant for the year 2010 Fig.8: Total Number of conflicts in which properties of people have been destroyed in Jorhat Division over 3 years 2008-09-10 Fig.List of figures: Serial Number 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Name of Figures Fig. 2 Map showing the Raiding tracks in the project area Fig.9: Amount of ex-gratia paid by government to the people against the destruction caused by Wild Elephants Page Number 11 13 14 17 18 19 20 20 21 21 22 22 7 .7: Total Number of conflicts in which properties of people have been destroyed in Golaghat Division over 3 years 2008-09-10 Fig.4: Death of Elephants over various Divisions since 2005 to 2011 Fig.7-b: Percentage of conflicts in areas affected by wild elephant for the year 2009 Fig.

The organization has offices in more than 80 countries around the world. 8 .called WWF International . Over the 50 years since it was founded.1 History Of WWF: WWF is one of the world's largest conservation organizations. It employs around 2.1. an autonomous office. with the express objective of ensuring the conservation of the country's wildlife and wild habitats.000 projects. Its first office opened in September 1961 in the Swiss town of Morges. It was founded in 1969 as a Charitable Public Trust. Minimizing wasteful consumption and promotion of sustainable and wise use of natural resources by all sectors of society Promoting the active involvement of rural and traditional communities in the sustainable management and conservation of natural resources. 1. by: • Conserving the world's biological diversity • Ensuring that the use of renewable natural resources is sustainable • Promoting the reduction of pollution and wasteful consumption.2 WWF's Mission Statement To stop the degradation of the planet's natural environment and to build a future in which humans live in harmony with nature. WWF is an independent foundation registered under Swiss law. Working towards reduction in the sources and impacts of climate change. major ecosystems and critical landscapes.is now located in Gland. and raised conservation funds through appeals. WWF-India started life as a wildlife conservation organization. The central secretariat for the network . campaigns. Main Objectives of WWF India: WWF-India's goal is the protection of India’s ecological security through the following broad programme objectives: • • • • Ensuring conservation of the country’s biodiversity. WWF-India is part of the WWF family.500 full time staff and values the support of more than 5 million people. WWF invested almost US$10 billion in more than 13. WWF-India initiated the country's first large-scale education and awareness program (through Nature Clubs) public awareness of wildlife and nature conservation. INTRODUCTION: 1. with the Secretariat based in New Delhi. Switzerland (organizational structure). educational product sales. and so on. It was conceived on the 29th April 1961.

• lobbying for policies supporting wildlife conservation. awareness raising and capacity building Ensuring that environmental principles are integrated into development planning. • reducing poaching and wildlife trade. Conservation of Critical Regions: WWF-India chose the following landscapes and critical regions to focus its conservation agenda: • • • • • • • • • • Satpuda Maikal (SML) Terai Arc (TAL) Western Ghats-Nilgiris Sunderbans North Bank (NBL) Kaziranga Karbi Anglong (KKL) Kanchendzonga (KCL) Western Arunachal Himalayan High altitude Wetlands Bharatpur 9 . policy and practices Promoting environmental governance through legislations. policy and advocacy.3 Activities undertaken by WWF. • working with communities for creating sustainable livelihoods and • Increasing protection of critical wildlife bearing areas.India: WWF-India’s objectives for species and landscape conservation include: • Research and baseline data collection of the target species and their associated species as well as their habitats. reducing the use of toxic chemicals and ensuring improved management of toxic waste Enhancing active participation of all sections of society in nature conservation and environmental protection through environmental education. 1. • mitigation of human-wildlife conflict.• • • • Minimizing pollution.

Asiatic lion. Indian rhino. black-necked crane . • Elephants: Mitigating human elephant conflicts and ensuring better habitat and linkages.Priorities to Endangered Species: Species whose conservation is targeted within landscapes are – • Royal Bengal tiger. 1. snow leopard etc. • Creating awareness by creating centre for conservation studies in Darrang college Tezpur.4 Recent activities in WWF Assam: • Rhinos: Creating more population of rhinos in the state and increase the overall numbers to 3000 by 2020. red panda. snow leopard. • Freshwater species like Ganges river dolphin. Asian elephant. freshwater turtles as well as conservation issues • Control trafficking of species. Gharial. Nilgiri Tahr. • Tigers: Estimating tigers and ensuring their protection in all the tiger Protected areas. India. This involves translocation and addressing poaching and trade related issues. otters. 10 .

1 Map ofIndia Bank Landscape North 23° Bangladesh 23° Myanmar (Burma) N 27° 27° BHUTAN 85° 90° ASSAM MYANMAR NAGALAND 95° 92° 93° 94° 95° The entire Landscape.2. 1) The project area is distributed among fifteen (15) districts of the two states and extends from 26011/ N to 29023/ N and longitudinally it lies between 91044/ E to 95054/ E.1 Human Elephant Conflicts (HEC) management in Sonitpur district of Assam North Bank Landscape (NBL). across the states of Assam & Arunachal Pradesh in north-east India. North East India: Introduction: The North Bank Landscape (NBL) lies north of the river Brahmaputra extending upto the eastern Himalayan foothills.1 DESCRIPTION OF THE HEC PROJECT UNDERTAKEN BY WWF: 2. had a continuous belt of forest cover and has been a refuge to a significant population of over 2000 Asian Elephants.137 sq. Straddling the Assam– Arunachal Pradesh state border. km.. since historical times provided a very good habitat for the Asian Elephants. (see Fig. encompassing a total geographical area of 85. 92° 93° 94° 95° 85° 29° 90° E 95° NB L 33° N NBL PROJECT AREA 33° 29° China 28° 28° Nepal Bhutan ARUNACHAL PRADESH 28° 28° Fig. 65% loss in Assam part of NBL) forest loss during the last few decades has resulted in the reduction and fragmentation of critical wildlife habitats.1. Populations of large mammals like Asian Elephants 11 . which originally had a continuous belt of rich forest cover. until recently. PROJECT ACTIVITIES: 2. But unprecedented (apprx. NBL.

Methodology: 12 . The present scenario is such that the remaining forests if not protected and the habitats if not conserved with immediate effect the elephants and rich biodiversity of this landscape may very soon become a part of history. In this context the Sonitpur district of Assam was found to be the hot bed for HEC and hence HEC mitigation measures were decided to be concentrated in this area under the present project in the year 2004. Human Elephant Conflict (HEC) has been constantly rising in the region primarily due to increasing human activities and constant pressure on the forested areas. household and other property damage.e. the ethnic conflicts and large scale felling combined with subsequent encroachment of the forests in the Assam part of the landscape has reached unmanageable proportions. WWF’s Asian Rhino and Elephant Action Strategy (AREAS) Programme identified North Bank Landscape in the Eastern Himalayan foothills as one of its high priority areas for long term conservation of Asian Elephants. The socio-political unrest. natural forest cover has been decreasing drastically affecting elephant habitat. For the purpose AREAS NBL Program has identified HEC mitigation in the landscape as a short term measure to achieve it’s long term elephant conservation goal. To improve people’s “conservation mindedness” by helping them to reduce their loss of crop and property due to elephants. To minimize the elephant caused damage (i. Objective: The two main objectives of the project were: 1. 2. Vision: To extend the same objectives in all the nearby districts of Assam near the NBL region suffering from HEC. With this backdrop. the increasing need for flat land for development and large scale migration of people from higher altitudes to the road heads and valleys is taking away vital linkages connecting elephant populations and habitats. have also been rising in the landscape. Elephant killing. in many cases retaliatory. crop damage. While elephant population in the landscape has remained almost constant over the years since 1993. In Arunachal Pradesh. human life) in the non forest (or revenue) areas of Sonitpur district to minimize the retaliatory killing of elephants due to HEC.which need vast areas to function are in danger of becoming further fragmented into smaller population units. As a consequence.

Assam a HEC Mitigation Strategy was developed and implemented during the present project. It was also presumed that this effort would never be good enough to prevent all the elephants coming out from the forest areas.To fulfill the objectives of the project a multi faceted methodology was adopted. oriented and equipped in strategic locations to deal with the elephants which would cross the initial kunki barrier.e. These ADS in their turn tried to prevent elephants from moving into their crop fields and houses. RAIDING TRACKS SONITPUR DISTRICT. 2 Map showing the Raiding tracks in the project area K EYS M jor R id g Tra a a in ck H h ay ig w R ilw y Tr ck a a a T Ga d s ea r en R se e For e rv d est A e r as The Elephant tracks coming from the remaining forest areas into the revenue areas (i. Capacity building of the ADS was done to enable them to help the forest department so that both the forest department and the ADS could function jointly in a more efficient way to keep the raiding elephant herds away from settlement areas and crop fields. Therefore in Sonitpur district fifty (50) *Anti Depredation Squads (ADS) were formed. 13 . NBL 10 0 10 20 Kilometers Nameri NP Sonai Rupai WLS Balipara RF Naduar RF Biswanath RF Beehali RF Gohpur RF Biswanath Chariali Dhekiajuli Tezpur N Fig. 2) along the southern periphery of the forest areas. village areas and non-forest areas) were worked out and mapped with updating up to 2003 season. 2) was tried to be prevented by using ‘kunki’ elephants on identified exit points (see Fig. On the basis of a preliminary ground survey to assess the elephant movement pattern in the revenue areas of the Sonitpur district. Elephant movement on these elephants tracks (to be mentioned as raiding tracks hereinafter) (see Fig.

of undisturbed riverine island area with grassland from where they would again venture into the nearby crop field and village areas. These squads are formed in strategic locations … see map…. To deal with this situation a few ADS were formed along the Brahmaputra river bank so that elephant movement from the river island down south towards the villages in the north could be prevented.D epreda ti on S qu ad Loca ti on Fig. to be effective for anti depredation operations. 3 Map showing location of the ADS • Anti-Depredation Squads are teams of local people formed to help the forest department in anti depredation operations and also to build capacity within the community in using non lethal anti depredation measures. 2 and 3) where they could access 50-60 sq kms. They were not paid any honorarium for guarding because the understanding was that they will guard their crop from wild elephant depredation and WWF is helping them to save their own crop. 14 . NORTH BANK LANDSCAPE N 27 ÿ ÿÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ 27 ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ rÿ ÿÿ rr ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿr ÿ ÿ rÿ ÿ ÿ r ÿ ÿ r rÿ r ÿ ÿ r ÿ ÿ rÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ rr ÿ ÿ ÿ rÿ ÿ ÿ rÿ ÿ r ÿr ÿ ÿ r rr ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ r ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ r ÿ ÿ rÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ rÿ ÿÿ ÿ ÿÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ r ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ rÿÿ rÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ rÿ ÿÿ r ÿ ÿ ÿ r ÿ ÿÿ r rÿ rrÿ r r ÿ ÿ r r r r ÿ ÿÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ rÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ ÿ r ÿ rÿ r rÿ ÿ LE G E ND D is tri ct B ou n da ry R es erved F ores t Ar ea s E nc roach ment s Tea Gar den s C on fli ct P atter n ÿ ÿ ÿ H igh M ediu m Low 9 0 9 18 Miles r 93 R iver An ti. Each such squad is composed of 10-12 members. These squads were given an orientation on anti depredation measures to be adopted. 93 ANTI-DEPREDATION SQUAD LOCATIONS SONITPUR DISTRICT.In spite of all these efforts planned it was further presumed that some elephant herds would still manage to reach the Brahmaputra river(see Fig. To adopt this methodology the following data were collected.

Although the elephant drive records for Sonitpur east division could not be collected at a similar level of detail. Data on ADS for proper planning – Location and contact details of each ADS were collected. Besides.2). number of kunkies used.g. accessibility of fodder for kunki.Data collection:         Data on Elephant movement – Existing data on elephant movement in the raiding tracks was updated up to January’2004. how much manpower was used. etc. Data on Elephant drives – Data on elephant drives conducted by the FD throughout the season were collected. Data on location of Kunki installation – Location of all possible kunki installation sites for the season were collected by using GPS. other necessary information. Data on elephant death / human death – These data were collected from the FD offices and then crosschecked in the field. other resources used like vehicle/lights/crackers/guns. … see list… The ADS locations were selected in such a pattern that these ADS were able to keep the elephants confined in a safe / shelter area efficiently to minimize their movements towards the crop fields and settlement areas. Data on damage caused by elephant – Data on crop damage was collected by interviewing a group of people in thirty (30) villages which were selected on a systematic random basis. response by the project and remark. Contact details of each ADS were necessary for developing coordination in elephant drives. … attach field format… It was felt during this data collection that all necessary aspects of elephant movement (behavior) can not be understood by this method. There is a serious and urgent need to initiate radio telemetry studies in this area. long-term measures were collected from questionnaire survey conducted in thirty (30) villages selected on a systematic random basis (for details see section 5. see data sheet… These data include which FD office was involved. This was done by rapid field surveys using field formats … see field format… and GPS. Data on people’s perception – People’s perception about HEC. nearby grazing area for kunki) for each of these sites were collected. Data on the telephone calls received at the NBL field station in regard to HEC were collected in a register book in a simple format. composition of elephant herds. drives conducted from where to where. This contains call from whom. These data were collected on a weekly basis from the FD. crosschecked and then recorded in a register book…. Understanding of these aspects might play a very crucial role in developing a better HEC Mitigation Strategy for the region. short-term measures as adopted by the present project. (details may be seen in the crop damage assessment part later in this report) Data on other damages like house and property could not be collected meaningfully. 15 . (e. All events of elephant death and human death could not be verified in the field due to lack of staff time of the project team.

Golaghat and Jorhat where there have been reports of frequent HEC over a large period of time. 3). These locations were recorded during visits to these places to form the ADS. Other information in the data set was also consulted to see the feasibility of promoting ADS in respective locations.2 Major Objective of one month Project with WWF:  To access the magnitude of Human Elephant Conflicts (HEC) in selected districts of Assam. HEC data regarded for Sonitpur & Udalguri districts have already been collected and well analyzed. 16 . Data on location of Kunki installations were collected from the field to verify these sites with respect to the maps. Besides these dataset was also useful in determining and mapping of the kunki installation sites. 2. Data on Elephant drives were analyzed to see the kind of resource/investment required to conduct these drives. An approximate cost of each drive was calculated from this dataset. Other information in this data set was used to determine the feasibility of these sites to keep kunki elephants for a few months during the raiding season. Lakhimpur. 2). Analyze the data to access the magnitude of HEC. 2. 3). Further extending the scope of this HEC project from two districts I had to collect data from 4 other districts/ divisions of Assam viz. Data on ADS locations were recorded on field to verify the locations with respect to the maps (see Fig. The ADS locations were selected to reduce elephant movement along these identified raiding tracks (see Fig. Collection of data on HEC on a pre-designed format. Dhemaji.Data analysis: Data on Elephant movement was used to generate maps to show the updated raiding tracks in the project area (see Fig. These maps were then used to work out locations for ADS.3 Major task assigned at WWF: 1. 2. The database on contact details of the ADS was used to network with the ADS and the FD for planning elephant drives and also to monitor position of elephant herds.

4.1Death of Elephants over various Divisions since 2005 to 2011: 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 0 G olag D hat ivion Jorhat D ion ivis Number of Elephan t Deaths 2 005 2 006 20 07 20 08 200 201 2011 9 0 Year Fig.2 Death of Human over various Divisions since 2005 to 2011: 17 .2. It can be seen that there is high rate of deaths in the Golaghat Division as compared to Lakhimpur or Jorhat divisions.4. I couldn’t find any record of such incidents in the Divisional office. Electrocution. Poaching and injury caused by falling into various trenches near the Tea garden areas. this is may be related with very small number of tusker elephant present in the herd whereas the major causes were accidents and injury. Whereas there is a proper collection of data from the Golaghat and Jorhat Division and data on Elephant deaths were there and I have arranged them year wise and made a comparison of the two divisions. It can be either that there have been no casualties or there is no proper storage of data by the officials of those two forest division. The rate of Poaching is quiet low. 2. From the elephant death data it is also very clear that the HEC in Jorhat is a comparatively low.4: Death of Elephants over various Divisions since 2005 to 2011 After the collection of various data on Elephant death of the 4 Division it can be seen that there is no record of any death of Elephants in the Lakhimpur & Dhemaji Division due to HEC. The death of Elephants in the Golaghat Division were mainly caused by natural cause (illness).4 ANALYSIS OF DATA COLLECTION: 2. accidents with Trains while crossing Railway tracks.

It could be a major study to know the causes behind such incidents of Human casualties. We can conclude that those people who are general a bit old suffer the most whenever there is an Elephant conflict. There also have been many casualties in the Jorhat division after Golaghat Divison. There are various possible reasons why the casualties have been very high in the Golaghat Division. Taking an account of the various age groups of human casualties in Lakhimpur as well as Dhemaji division it is seen that most of the victims were of upper age group of around 40-70 years. Consumption of Liquor has also been a major issue for the victims. There wasn’t much information regarding the age limit of peoples killed in a conflict in Jorhat and Golaghat Division so I couldn’t relate the same reasons of human casualties as I could do in case of Lakhimpur and Dhemaji Division.5: Death of Human over various Divisions due to HEC since 2005 to 2011 Making a comparison of the data collected of various human casualties due to wild elephant it can be seen there have been frequent attacks of Wild Elephant in Golaghat division as compared to the other 3 divisions. People of this upper age group find it difficult to escape themselves against certain panic attacks by Elephants and that is the reason why they are being killed. Discussion with various Forest officials has revealed a fact that various victims were found to be in a state of intoxication while they were being attacked by Elephants. Being intoxicated they were not in a state to escape or save themselves.___ 1 2 1 0 Numbe r of 8 Human 6 Deaths 4 2 0 2 5 00 2 6 00 20 7 0 Dhem aji L akhim pur Golag hat Jorhat Year 2 08 0 2 9 00 2 0 01 2 1 01 Fig. The reason behind these casualties might be similar which will be discussed in the conclusion. 18 .

Elephants move across these river beds in search of food and salt which is a very important part of daily diet of Elephants. This is one of the interesting characteristic of the Elephants in northeast India where the wild elephants mate with the captive ones whereas this is one of the very rare in case of wild elephants observed in all over the world. The male wild elephants get attracted by these female tame elephants from miles by their scent and the come in search for them for mating. Under Dhemaji division there are very few forest areas at the two ends of the districts viz.6: Damage of Crop. Another interesting fact came into light was that there are many captive Elephants in the Dhemaji district where people use them for various works. A pattern of pathway can be seen across these river beds. 19 . Properties etc caused by Wild Elephants in Dhemaji and Lakhimpur Division There has been a very few records of damage of properties done by Wild Elephants in the two Divisions Lakhimpur and Dhemaji. Due to this reason the wild elephants come and attack the human habitat. The numbers of incidents are very low in Dhemaji Division in comparison to that of Lakhimpur Division.3(a) Damage of Crop. Properties etc caused by Wild Elephants in Dhemaji and Lakhimpur Division: 25 Number of people affected by Elephan t conflict s 20 15 Dhem aji 10 5 0 L akhim pur 20 08 2 9 00 2 10 0 20 11 Year Fig. Therefore the elephant lost their path and now they interfere into human habitats. There are 20 rivers flowing across Dhemaji and these rivers are a source of salts and fertile soil where the grass vegetation is quiet lucrative for the elephants. So there are few conflicts near these two areas of forest.2. But there is a certain pattern or pathways of the wild elephants across the river belt across Dhemaji. There has been very less interference of elephants with human in places around Lakhimpur but due to the construction of mega dam at Gerukamukh area and also a military firing ground in Dulung RF which used to be very important elephant corridor. Jonai and Gerukamukh ( Suwansiri). These captive elephants mainly consist of the female.4.

I have tried to relate these and coming to a conclusion that which areas are having frequent conflicts of elephant over a period of 3 years. Properties etc caused by wild elephant in Golaghat division: Total Number of conflicts in which properties of people have been destroyed in Golaghat Division over 3 years 2008-09-10: 150 100 50 0 86 45 132 2008 2009 2010 Number of HEC Fig.2. Percentage of conflicts in areas affected by wild elephant for the year 2008: 10.34 25.86 3. The conflict prone areas could be obtained and further research could be done to understand the proper cause of behind these HEC.4.3(b) Damage of Crop.45 48.7: Total Number of conflicts in which properties of people have been destroyed in Golaghat Division over 3 years 2008-09-10 There has been a proper record of all the data regarding the property damaged of various peoples under Golaghat Division.7-a: Percentage of conflicts in areas affected by wild elephant for the year 2008 Percentage of conflicts in areas affected by wild elephant for the year 2009: 20 .07 Fig.27 Rongbong Behora Rowduwar Numaligarh Borchapori 12.

2.7-c: Percentage of conflicts in areas affected by wild elephant for the year 2010 After comparing the various data of HEC in Golaghat it can be seen that the reach of Elephants have increased over a vast area and as compared to 2008 there are more areas that are under the influence of HEC.1 Numaligarh Bordehingia Rajabari Behora Kachupathar Bosapathar Rowduwarpathar Kamargaon Borchapori Thengal Gaon Fig.1 3.7 5. This shows that there is a rise of HEC and that the Elephant are choosing to make trouble over a large amount of areas thus increase their span of turbulence.45 9.82 7.8 6. There are about 5 or 6 major places where the HEC took place in 2008 but it has increased to about 10 or 12 major places over Golaghat Division.7-b: Percentage of conflicts in areas affected by wild elephant for the year 2009 Percentage of conflicts in areas affected by wild elephant for the year 2010: 3.13 7.7 30.33 Behora Borpakgaon Numaligarh Komargaon Rowduwar Rajbari Fig.45 17.63 5.777 33.36 15.27 9.633.560 21.63 4.3(c) Damage of Crop.12. Properties etc caused by wild elephant in Jorhat Division: 21 .4.

8: Total Number of conflicts in which properties of people have been destroyed in Jorhat Division over 3 years 2008-09-10 Amount of ex-gratia paid by government to the people against the destruction caused by Wild Elephants in Jorhat Division: 6000000 4000000 Amount in Rs.080 2007 2008 2009 2010 2000000 0 Ex-gratiapaid by Gov to people .89.850 14. 52.640 30.135 40.Total Number of conflicts in which properties of people have been destroyed in Jorhat Division over 3 years 2008-09-10: 3000 2000 1000 0 2313 1030 1761 691 2007 2008 2009 2010 Number of HEC Fig.27.45.82. Fig.9: Amount of ex-gratia paid by government to the people against the destruction caused by Wild Elephants 22 .

3. Now these places are being occupied by people and all the forests are being cleaned off. Assam. There has been increase in deforestation and the habitat of wild life is shrinking day by day. I could only make rough assumptions about what could be the possible reasons of the rise in HEC in various places over Assam based on my personal observation and secondary information during the study period. 23 . To study the proper trend of Elephant behavior it takes time and it is very necessary to find out the root cause of such conflicts. The two major Divisions that are being highlighted in the analysis were Golaghat and Jorhat where there has been a rise in HEC.There was a good data base collected from the Jorhat division. There have been certain river islands (Majuli) which were very productive places for the Elephants and also these were many forest areas across the borders of Nagaland and Jorhat which were the habitat of Elephants. It can be seen that Jorhat Division is a quiet high HEC prone area. As a result of which the habitat of the elephants has been disturbed and they move across various areas of Numaligarh and result in destruction of places and properties of people who have occupied the land which was once the famous corridor or pathways of the Wild Elephants. These pathways or corridors of the Elephants are being destroyed my human and they have occupied it for their own use. It has been found that there was a pathway of the Elephants between Jorhat and Nagaland border. My objectives were restricted to collection of data and it’s analysis over HEC. There has been a vast record of property damaged done by Elephants to the people across various places.1 Overall Conclusion: As there was a shortage of time and my working with WWF has been for only a short duration of one month I wasn’t able to get myself involve in much of the activities. Government should take steps in identifying the main cause for all these conflicts and find out a proper conclusion in order to decrease such HEC in future. Therefore it can be estimated that a huge amount of revenue and property of the people are being damaged every year by these ongoing HEC. In case of Golaghat it has been seen that there used to be a corridor or pathway of the Elephants through the forest over a place called Numaligarh. Nagaland etc. There has been earlier studied which shows that there has been certain corridors or pathways of the Elephants across various Northeast states like Arunchal Pradesh. As these Elephants follow the trend of going through these old pathways they come face to face with human civilization and they cause destruction. But now it has become a very busy and famous industrial area known as NRL or Numaligarh oil refinery. The actual damage of properties is much more as compared to the ex-gratia paid by government to these peoples. Government has also been paying a huge amount of revenue to the people who are being affected a lot by these HEC.

The Elephants are being widely affected by these changes and pattern as they follow a certain path and when they face up with such diversification they create problems. I have gained a thorough knowledge on the HEC project of WWF in Assam.The rise in population of human has resulted in demand of more space and area. Due to lack of a good storage system of data I couldn’t make proper analysis in some Divisions while in some places the data 24 . WWF should look into the matter of the rising conflicts under these two Divisions and finding out various methods and solution for the decrease of the HEC over these two places.2 Recommendations to WWF: WWF started in Assam with the objective of reducing the rising HEC in Sonitpur Division. 3. As a result of which they have been cutting down forest and satisfying there needs. The organizational structure of Forest Department in Assam. This results in rapid and unplanned land diversification and modification of the habitats of the Wild Elephants and other wild animals. In order to stop further HEC there should be strict restrictions in deforestation especially in those areas where there is movement of Elephants or it has been their habitat. 3. These Districts have various Divisional offices and under each Division there are certain Range offices consisting of Rangers and under these Range offices lies certain Beat offices. It has been quiet successful in reaching its goal and reducing the HEC over Sonitpur division. If the data are stored properly then various analysis can be done on it and useful information can be gained from those analysis. After my collection of data on HEC over the 4 major divisions near Sonitpur I have found that there have much of disturbance of Elephants in the Jorhat and Golaghat Division. The forests Department are divided according to the various Districts of Assam. The main motive of WWF in Assam in protecting the Flora and Fauna of the State. 2. 4. I would recommend that WWF should expand its work area and establish a base between Jorhat and Golaghat Division so that HEC incidents of both of these places could be well managed. Learning accumulated: The basic things that I have experienced in WWF in a short span of one month are listed below: 1. As the project undertaken by them under Sonitpur division has been a success up to an extent so further expanding themselves and trying to undertake a new project for these two Divisions under the guidance of Forest Department could be a solution of all the rising HEC in Assam. There are various projects undertaken by WWF in Assam and I had a rough overview of all the other projects that it is undergoing right now. The storage of data should always be done orderly for it may be very useful later on in due course of time.

wwf.was stored properly and I could make a proper analysis which would be much helpful to gain proper information to my organization WWF. References/ Bibliography: Websites: http://journal.com For secondary data sources: DFO (Divisional Forest Officer) of Jorhat DFO of Dhemaji DFO of Golaghat DFO of Lakhimpur NBL final report 2004 Environmental Information system Assam 25 .cambridge.org www.com www. 5.nbl.