Living with Elephants

Promoting human-elephant coexistence is crucial across elephant ranges, as, in most places, elephants and people are interacting with each other frequently. Collective efforts by various sections of the society play a vital role in increasing people’s tolerance towards elephants and reducing pressures on them. Basic scientific understanding of ecological and behavioural aspects of elephants and their interactions with people is critical in identifying appropriate solutions.

This movie, filmed by renowned filmmaker Saravanakumar focuses on the coexistence measures initiated by the Nature Conservation Foundation (NCF) on the Valparai plateau in the Anamalai hills. These current initiatives are based on long-term (1994 – 2014) scientific monitoring of elephants.

The 220 sq km of Valparai plateau is a matrix of tea and coffee plantations with interspersing rainforest fragments. This plateau, a part of the Anamalai landscape, is home to 80-100 elephants and supports about 70,000 people. Living with elephants is inevitable and coexistence here is desirable. This movie showcases locally adaptable and feasible technological facilities with the involvement of local stakeholders to empower people to manage human-elephant conflict in the plantation dominated landscape of the Valparai region. The movie hopes to promote understanding the significance of science-based conservation initiatives coupled with participatory approaches in conflict mitigation and elephant conservation.

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