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UK Research and Innovations (2021)

The impact of social relationships on crop-raiding in male African savannah elephants

Elephants Male Savannas Crop-Raiding

Titre : The impact of social relationships on crop-raiding in male African savannah elephants

Pays/Région : Botswana

Durée : juin 21 - déc. 24

Référence projet : 2607129
Catégorie : Studentship

Résumé
In contrast to the well-studied social relations in matriarchal groups, the social relations governing bull behaviour is poorly understood in elephants..There is growing evidence that bull elephant behaviour is driven by male-male social processes. From puberty, males leave their maternal herd and natal areas, joining bull societies in areas that are unknown to them. Here, males seek out the proximity of older individuals. By staying close to older males, young males likely benefit from their knowledge about local resources, while learning social rules of bull society. However, in agricultural areas the leadership role of older males can be problematic. Highly-nutritional cultivated plants are often sought by old males who enter the farmers fields to crop-raid. Young males may follow older associates onto the community land and learn this behaviour, bringing them in direct conflict with local communities. We will examine human-wildlife conflict in elephants in Botswana, with the aim of understanding the social role of old elephant bulls.

Lead Research Organisation : University of York

Financement : Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)

UK Research and Innovations

Page publiée le 2 septembre 2022