Monday 19 October 2015

Elephants and Bees Project in Kenya ... and a very Happy Birthday to Lenny tomorrow ...

Who would have thought that that huge pachyderm, the elephant, would be frightened by bees – yet they are. 

A project has been started in Kenya – which by social media (YouTube) has been copied by other conservation projects or local communities which needed to work in conjunction with elephants and people.  In Africa, Sri Lanka and India … the value of social media – here I concur!

Dr Lucy King comes from Eastbourne, but works under the auspices of Oxford University and Disney’s Animal Kingdom in Kenya.  Her project, Save the Elephant, is an innovative study into the use of novel Beehive Fences as a natural elephant deterrent.

Man and animals so often do collide … crop-raiding; or for profit through poaching … a cruel death.  Food is essential to all African farming communities leading to conflict with humans if their crops are trampled or eaten.  How to combat these challenges?

Crop raided farm
The loss in numbers of this huge herbivorous mammal in Africa is frightening; with their status being listed as vulnerable in 2008, while the Asian elephant was endangered … yet numbers continue to be decimated all the time. 

650 elephants were killed in 2012 by Chadian raiders in Bouba D’Njida National Park, Cameroon for their ivory.  A year later another 86 elephants and calves, including pregnant cows, were killed in the same region.

About thirty years ago there were 150,000 elephant in the West African area (Central African Republic, through Chad to Cameroon) … now that figure could be as low as 2,000.  Horrific to consider.

The location of Mwambiti Research area; it is near the Lumo Community Wildlife Sanctuary -
the green lozenge shape - on the edge of the Tsavo National Park and within the lowland
community settlements along the main road across to Mombasa on the Indian Ocean.
The green Park cutting in at top left of the picture is the Serengeti National Park.

Conservationists are always looking for new ways to protect these huge beasts in the areas where a decent elephant population still remains … southern Africa, particularly Kenya … and where they co-habit with humans. 

Dr King explained that they had heard elephants steered clear of bees at their beehives … so after consideration – she and her team in Mwambiti
Dr Lucy King
on a project to see if this was really true: the elephant were avoiding certain trees that, for example, held a beehive.

A concept of an idea ... 

How and what to do … after research, their novel approach was to build a flimsy fence around an area of a farmer’s land, where crops needed protection, and string ‘beehive boxes’ at certain intervals.

The connective wire (hence the flimsy bit!) – once knocked by the elephant it would rock the bees in their boxes awake – and the elephant would move on.

However improbable it sounds it works … Dr King showed us some remarkable footage … including of an elephant trying to get his leg through the wire – it’s at about a metre high – and then being frustrated, trying again using the other leg … so funny – but so brilliant to see this mammoth walking off in disgust. (Videos and photos are on the website)

Taking the wires used to hang the beehive boxes
between the staves around the farmer's field

Still the huge benefits this work brings to the community – they now have an actual research centre in the locality – visiting dignitaries (Bill Clinton and Chelsea) highlight the Project in other arenas … 

I see an Australian soil scientist has been working there, guiding the locals in ways to improve their land ...

Angelina with some of her honey

… the farmers are able to farm and market their crops, there are other benefits – paying internships, the women folk are involved, harvesting the honey, making candles and lip balm … all bringing in much needed cash into the local community.

Augustine and his team of farmers

Augustine Musyoka, Project Officer at the Elephant and Bees Research Centre, wrote a blog post explaining his role in this conservation work – his passion really comes across in this well-written post.

Also he gives further detail how the mechanics of the whole came about … a fascinating read.

Gathering honey for the community and to sell on
This talk covered passions of mine – Africa, conservation, working with and helping local communities (keeping the villages involved, including the tribal chief), feeding the local population, providing other work, and giving them a place in the world that they can all be proud of: evidenced by all the recognition that the Project is receiving.

Those flimsy wires I mentioned … in Mozambique, the Wildlife volunteers advised they could not use wire … as the poachers would have stolen it by the next day … so they strip tyres down and weave the strips into ‘threads’ to connect the hanging beehives.

Gathering the grass into sheaves to use as roofs
over the beehive swings
The fences do not need many beehive boxes along their course … and by trial and error they’ve reduced the quantity so they swing efficiently which see the elephants off, once the buzzing starts!

Hive boxes ready for the community to install

It was a fascinating talk by, Dr Lucy King, a lady who is totally passionate about her work …

Here is the website with its links to the Elephants and BeesProject under the auspices of Save the Elephants.

This is Augustine’s blog postwhere he explains all - much better than I do … and you get the added benefit of more photos.  If I was doing more … you’d have to watch a video of me waving my arms around, pointing aimlessly at some very basic stick drawings!

Long line of honey jars .... one of the value added products

One other thing the Project does that may be relatively unusual in today’s world … is that they are happy to share their knowledge for free … so please visit and enjoy.

My god-daughter made a baked bean cake of the Heinz 57
variety for her father's 57th ... I just loved it - I didn't get to
eat any - but the photo is good to go?!
Happy Birthday tomorrow Lenny - it is all 'sweet' ...
but the baked beans look so real.

Lenny - have a very happy week taking things slowly and just enjoying the hugs and love you will be getting from all your amazing friends ... with much love from GrandBlogMom xoxoxoxo

PS - I'm away in the West Country for ten days or so ... so forgive the shortage of acknowledgements ... 

Hilary Melton-Butcher
Positive Letters Inspirational Stories


Denise Covey said...

Hey Hilary, enjoy the west country. What a great post, as per usual. Stringing up those bee hives is genius! Amazing how quickly we're killing off our animal friends, but I suppose we're also killing off our human friends at a great rate.

Now a baked bean cake? Who would have thought? But I suppose it could taste amazing!

Denise :-)

Elephant's Child said...

Have a wonderful time in the west country.
What a fascinating post - and an amazing solution to an apparently intractable problem. I love it. Practical, and allowing the elephants to continue to live.
Baked Bean cake? Recipe please? And those beans do indeed look real.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Just an extra note re elephants, being poached and the illegal trade in ivory: One ivory smuggling ring in Tanzania has been broken up ... the leader, a woman has been caught. More than 706 tusks were going out of the country.

It's been reported that the Central African Republic elephant relies on the clear waters of the Dzanga Bai ... a World Heritage site.

It's a gathering point for the forest elephants - and they are being slaughtered by the hundreds.

The forest elephant is the African elephant's diminutive cousin ... with now possibly only 100,000 or less surviving.

Africa's forest elephants are magnificent, intelligent creatures. Their headlong decline is a rebuke to mankind, but especially those those humans who out of ignorance and vanity are driving them towards extinction.

Just wanted to add those bits in ... H

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Denise - thanks I will enjoy the trip once I set off tomorrow. Isn't the concept so simple, yet so clever ...

We are killing too many and too much - humans can't seem to realise what we need to stay around in this world ... we need balance .. and we certainly don't need to kill anything, let alone anyone.

Baked bean cake - yes when I saw it .. I thought, who'd have thought!

@ EC - thanks re the trip west - I'm looking forward to it. Glad you enjoyed the post .. I was bemused when I heard the talk ... and loved the information. Exactly ... everyone should be happy ... all living in harmony.

I'll have to get the recipe anon ... I'm sure it's a simple Victoria Sponge .. made bake beany .. but fun anyway!! They do look real don't they .. especially the way apparently the beans have been tipped out - but made so out of marzipan or icing .. don't know - just so realistic!!

Cheers to the two of you ... thanks for the comments .. Hilary

Marja said...

How sad that so many elephants are being killed. Such a beautiful animal.
My mum collects them SHe has more than a hundred little elephants. I love the project with the bees. My granddad was a beekeeper so we got a lot of honey in the past. We started to use honey as a replacement for sugar in the coffee
The baked beans cake is so funny. great job that cake

Annalisa Crawford said...

Good use of social media. And great use of bees. I thought it was mice that elephants were scared of ;-)

Happy birthday to Lenny. That cake looks... interesting.

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

Hope you have a good visit!

I love that this project is so simple but effective! Funny about the elephants getting annoyed and frustrated with this easy deterrent. Sounds as if it's good for the bees as well as the elephants...brilliant!

Susan Scott said...

Love to Lenny tomorrow Hilary, please pass this on to him ...

What a lovely post - who would have known? A win-win for everyone ..

Karen Lange said...

Thanks for this fascinating info. I did not know elephants were wary of bees - what a natural deterrent! I also did not know their numbers were so steadily decreasing. I knew they were not as large as they used to be, but wow. So glad efforts are being made on their behalf.

Thanks too, for the reminder of Lenny's birthday. Wishing him a happy month! Enjoy your trip!

Out on the prairie said...

It's very sad to see these huge creatures decimated. We often turn our heads away when we hear this continent mentioned.

Jo said...

What a brilliant idea and I am so glad it is working. Plus the honey is so good for the local economy. Hopefully I will have time later to follow some of your links. But I am thrilled to bits with this concept. I just wish the could stop the poachers, the declines in numbers are terrifying. Particularly with elephants but with rhinos too. Thanks for the information Hilary.

S.A. Larsenッ said...

I love reading about stories like this. Great efforts by so many. The fact that the elephant population has dwindled so greatly over the last thirty years is startling. I'm glad people and organizations care enough to help. It's amazing what people can do when we all work together for the greater good. Thanks for sharing this, Hilary.

Patsy said...

I'm really surprised elephants are afraid of bees. You'd think their thick skins meant they weren't stung. Brilliant idea to use this fear to protect crops without harming the animals though.

Rhodesia said...

What an interesting post and of course very close to my heart. Did you know that the poachers in Zimbabwe have resorted to poisoning the elephants which is horrific as they now die a slow and horrible death.
Hope you are well Diane

Bish Denham said...

Now THIS is a very interesting bit of information! Such a simple solution to a problem and protects not only the elephants but produces something sweet too!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

I had heard something of this project but you filled in the details. It's so sad and somewhat horrifying that so many elephants are being butchered.

Betsy Brock said...

Oh, that cake is amazing! Good for her...

I love that first photo of the elephants....trunk to sweet.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Marja - yes, they are stunning animals ... I spent some time once with a baby elephant that was being nurtured back to health in a game farm in Rhodesia .. incredible creatures ... but they've amazing memories too.

How delightful your mother has loads of little elephants - they make wondrous statues ... I've a few - but decided dusting wasn't a good idea - so restricted my purchases!

So interesting to hear your granddad was a beekeeper ... lovely fresh honey .. and now being used as a replacement for sugar - makes so much sense.

The cake is brilliant isn't it ... and a great job it is too.

@ Annalisa - exactly .. using social media the way it should be .. it was such an interesting talk. It's like mice are related to elephants ... but I suspect a mouse wouldn't frighten an elephant. The cake does look ... interesting doesn't it!

@ Elizabeth .. thanks the visiting and the trip will be huge learning curve - and I'm seeing lots of places I've never been to - I'm looking forward to it!

Exactly - keep it simple ... and effective it will be. Brilliant too - everyone wins ... the farmer's crops are protected, the elephant can still roam free as they do in that area, and the community reap the rewards from the honey and wax.

Thanks part 2 to my comments coming up ...

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Part 2 ...

@ Susan - I will suggest he comes and looks at the blog ... so he will get all the messages. Exactly who would have known about the bees and the elephants ... but everybody benefits.

@ Karen - I hadn't realised either ... though I might have been told when I was out living in South Africa. So simple isn't it.

The elephants decline is horrific ... they are being decimated - that's why I added in the extra bit into the comment section ... at least in this area of Kenya they have some chance and are still free roaming.

@ Steve - yes so desperately sad, and so cruel - Africa is worth getting to know - it's a beautiful country with so much going for it.

@ Jo - isn't it clever and working really well - that the idea is being spread. Enjoy the links when you get to look at them ... they are so well worth it.

The poachers are another story .. but as Diane (Rhodesia) mentions further down - they are now poisoning them in Zimbabwe .... a very terrible death. Doesn't help having leaders of countries who are thugs.

Much wildlife is struggling ... it is a desperately sorry tale.

@ Sherry - I'm so glad you enjoyed reading this story .. it's sad, but yet there's hope too. There's a huge decline in big wildlife - elephant, rhino as Jo mentions above, lion, tiger et al .. so not just Africa.

Exactly ... they've got the mix right here for the local peoples to keep farming, giving them some extra income from the honey and giving them a reason to look after the elephants ... working for the greater good is an excellent phrase. Thanks so much.

@ Patsy - I know ... it seem strange doesn't it - but they don't forget and somewhere along the line they'd have had a run in with a bee hive in a tree ... and been stung in their trunk, nostrils or ears ... and they are very clever ... they do not forget!

It is a great idea isn't it ... I was so pleased to hear the talk.

@ Karen - yes the demand for wealth (ivory) can make mankind cruel - they don't think of the effects ... more likely probably don't know. They are special aren't they ... I expect you saw them in the Addo Elephant park ... that was being set up before I left SA.

@ Diane - thanks ... I hadn't picked up about elephants being poisoned in Zimbabwe - Mugabe has a lot to answer for ... ghastly thought - as Rhodesia had/has one of the larger population of elephant - certainly 40 years ago.

Thanks Diane for the Guardian link ... desperately sad to read especially as I've been to Hwange , and then the ranger killed by a lion ... what a statement to make that it's all because of America. The cyanide and mining connection was a sad thing to find out about ...

@ Bish - isn't a great idea - so amazingly cool ... and so useful to everyone in the area.

@ Susan - I hadn't come across it ... so I was delighted to be able to get to Dr Lucy King's talk ... absolutely fascinating - then horrible reminders about the numbers of elephant being slaughtered.

@ Betsy - the cake looked fun .. that's why I really wanted a photo of it ... and I was so pleased I could use some of the photos for the blog - that picture delighted me too ..

Thanks so much everyone ... I'll email Lenny tomorrow before I leave letting him know there are lots of Birthday thoughts here ... cheers to you all - Hilary

Arlee Bird said...

Elephants are might smart animals. Wise to avoid bees. I try to keep my distance.

Arlee Bird
A to Z Challenge Co-host
Tossing It Out

cleemckenzie said...

I think the bee idea was brilliant and so beneficial for the people. They've got to have a reason to not poach and having sufficient money for their families is one way to give them that. I know there are many efforts on the law enforcement side of this issue, but the change has to come from the people. A good living. Education about their natural resources.

You made me hungry with that image of those lovely beans!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

That was a brilliant idea. And since bees are in danger as well, it helps save two species at once.

Chrys Fey said...

I love that project. Both bees and elephants are endangered, so the fact that this project works to save both is a plus. It's so sad how many elephants have been killed. They are such magnificent creatures.

Unknown said...

How fascinating!! And I love the creative solution. What a win-win!! Thanks so much for sharing. And those baked beans DO look real! Cracks me up! :) Have a great trip to the west country!

H. R. Sinclair said...

That's totally fascinating. What a simple way to keep the elephants out and add to the community at the same time.

Anonymous said...

Before I forget, that baked bean cake looks great - will a recipe follow or did I just miss it? Also, safe and fun travels!

I love this whole bee solution! So very clever. My son's dog is terrified of bees. Well, just the sound, so if she's getting into something she shouldn't, we buzz, and she immediately stops. Odd but it works. And yes, she's a big dog. Not the size of an elephant of course. ;)

L. Diane Wolfe said...

What a wonderful solution. Plus they get honey, too.

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Hilary -

I don't blame the elephants. I'm also afraid of bees!

Happy Birthday to Lenny! The baked bean cake is certainly a novel idea. Once I read the beans were sweet and not the real deal, it gained my interest. :)

Have fun on your trip,

DMS said...

That cake is amazing- the baked beans look real!

I learned so much on this blog today. I thought I knew quite a bit about the elephants and what was going on, but after reading this I realized I had only scratched the surface before. :) The bee solution is amazing! Thanks for sharing.

Have a fun trip!

Stephen Tremp said...

Happy Birthday Lenny!!!

I love the authentic garb. When I was a manager for GE I had a most diverse group of people and I allowed them to wear their traditional garb from around the world. This upset some of the suits and ties, but I did have one of the most progressive productive departments in the company.

beste barki said...

Hello Hilary, 706 tusks would mean 353 elephants. I don't understand how lacking in sound judgement some people can be. I still want to believe that we are all slowly creeping towards a better world.

Vallypee said...

What a wonderful, fantastic project! Saving elephants, crops and lives in one ingenious idea….and increasing bees too, which are also endangered. How inspiring, Hilary!

Suzanne Furness said...

Wow, what a fun and clever cake! Happy birthday to Lenny.
What an interesting story. I never knew elephants disliked bees and with the added advantage of producing honey. A win win story for all.
Enjoy your trip this way!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Lee - yes, elephants don't forget.

@ Lee - the concept of utilising the bees to protect the crops is such a great idea. Unfortunately it's not the farmers who are poaching, but people who are worse off and who are beguiled by cash. I hope the locals all over the world will protect their own ... But you're right .. it is education.

The bean cake is funny isn't it ..

@ Alex - isn't it such a great idea ... and the bees will add to nature through their pollination .. spreading growth.

@ Chrys - thanks - I was so pleased to go and listen to Dr King .. and her talk was fascinating. The elephant is a magnificent beast.

@ Thank you .. isn't it a win-win for so many people and creatures. My goddaughter did a very clever job with the top of the baked bean cake. West country here I come!

@ Holly - sometimes the simple things work best ... and it's certainly improving the communities life in all ways.

@ Elsie - doesn't the cake look good .. but it looks like a tin of baked beans poured over it - clever. I don't have the recipe - and actually don't know how she made them .. but liked the look of the cake and thought I could use that photo somewhere!

How interesting your dog doesn't like bees either and just a human 'buzzing' sound will stop her ..

@ Diane - exactly ... good solution and something delicious and nutritious to eat.

@ Susan - could say the same for all of us, I guess, I will leave bees to happily get on with their lives. The beans look so real .. and it was certainly a novel idea for a cake.

@ Jess - I agree .. they do look real baked beans. So glad you enjoyed and learnt from the post - there's an awful lot to learn and understand about African wildlife ...also about the politics, poaching and greed - it's very sad. But the bee solution is certainly a happy outcome.

@ Stephen - the clothes are amazing and reflect the traditions of the different communities. I really should investigate more. Your idea to let the staff wear their natural 'garb' was a clever move ... especially if you then had one of the most productive teams.

@ Beste - I know the number of tusk being exported to China was horrific and that was just one haul. Sadly it is greed, power, control ... but the Asians are still a backward people needing their artefacts ... it gives them status, and shows they have wealth ... and they don't understand the damage they are imposing.

@ Val - it's an amazing project isn't it ... and so ingenious, in that it's so simple. Bees also get a better deal and the crops will be improved through better pollination. Inspiring is the word.

@ Suzanne - very clever cake! I sincerely hope Lenny will have a happy day.

I put this post here as I thought he'd enjoy reading about the elephants and Lucy's work in Kenya. As you say they get honey too ...

Thanks everyone - today is Lenny's birthday ... let's wish him much happiness and an easier and better year ahead ... from me your GrandBlogMom to you Lenny, wonderful GrandBlogSon .. have a very happy and peaceful birthday today ... big hugs - Hilary

Rhonda Albom said...

Enjoy your holiday. Beehive fence could also work as a deterrent for me. Apparently I have something in common with those elephants, I am also afraid of bees. It sound like a pretty brilliant solution for the elephants.

Gattina said...

I love elephants and it is so sad that there are less and less. I didn't know that they were afraid of bees !
Wish you nice holidays !

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Rhonda - thank you .. I'll be leaving soon. Aren't the fences a great idea. I suspect many of us aren't too happy with bees - but the elephants want to eat the crops ... at least they use the paths around now. Brilliant solution all round.

@ Gattina - they are gorgeous creatures. Sadly so much poaching or now poisoning is going on - dreadful. This is happy story.

Cheers to you both .. I will try and leave soon!! Hilary

T. Powell Coltrin said...

I watched a couple of PBS specials on elephants lately. They are awesome animals. Fearless...except for bees? That's funny. I'm not even scared of bees.

Great article, Hilary.

Sherry Ellis said...

Fascinating information. Thank you so much for sharing!

I didn't know elephants were afraid of bees. I've heard they're afraid of mice. Sounds silly!

H.R. Bennett said...

Holy crap! That's amazing. That is just genius! It's a simple, basic design to not only protect the farmers but the elephants as well...Plus honey and more bees!

Everyone wins!

Murees Dupè said...

This definitely sounds like a great project. Anything to help the elephants:) Their populations is getting smaller and smaller. Poaching truly is awful. It is so wonderful of you to shine some light on this new project. It's funny that such a big animal is afraid of something so small as a bee:) But if it works . . . it works. Enjoy your time away.

MunirGhiasuddin said...

A couple of weeks ago, my son went to Africa and he said that he was touched by the poverty there.
I have written a post for Lenny's Birthday. I wish him good luck.

Tara Tyler said...

now this is a solution i can get bee-hind!
i enjoyed reading this article, tho i am dismayed at the lowered levels of pachyderms! thanks for talking about this problem and giving us hope - and now i'm not as ashamed to be afraid of bees - but then again, they're afraid of mice too... i wonder if dinos had any similar small creature fears!

Nilanjana Bose said...

Interesting post, as always, anything in Africa always pulls me right in :) It's amazing how getting the local community on board can transform the conservation scene.

Loved the idea of the baked bean cake, very creative!

Enjoy your trip!

Paula said...

Very interesting! I did not know that elephants feared bees! Thanks for such an educating topic. The picture of the Birthday cake is truly awesome. What an imagination!!

Crystal Collier said...

This is actually something I heard about at Disney World--on the Safari ride at Animal Kingdom. LOVE it. Any time we can figure out how to live with the land/animals, we're better off. (Unless you're talking about cockroaches, because there is no place on this green earth where they should exist.)

M Pax said...

What neat information, Hilary! I always love stopping in here and learning something new. Intriguing way to save the elephants.

klahanie said...

Hi Hilary,

Another in-depth story by your good self, Hilary. Fascinating stuff and elephants afraid of bees has a bit of sting in the tail.

Of course, a happy birthday to our young, inspirational buddy, Lenny.

Have an awesome time in the West Country. You can practice your pirate accent!


Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Teresa, Sherry, Murees, Robert, Munir, Tara, Nila Paula, Crystal, Mary, Gary - thanks so much. - I'll properly anon - Hilary

Lynn said...

That cake is so fun! And I hope Lenny has / had a happy birthday - I'm a little late to the party.

So wonderful to see the work with bees and the resulting product! Love the elephant story.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Lynn - isn't the cake amazing - the family went out so I hope Lenny had a happy day. Isn't the whole concept of the bee project for the community and keeping the elephants away from the crops clever - cheers Hilary

A Cuban In London said...

Only 2,000. How quickly we say that number and yet how slow the reversal process of breeding elephants would be. 2,000. I'm still trying to get my head around that.

Great post. Thanks.

Greetings from London.

Mason Canyon said...

Hilary hope you enjoy the west country. Bees and elephants are both such fascinating creatures. Amazing information, thanks for sharing.

Michael Di Gesu said...

Hi Hillary,

How sad what poachers do to the world'so magnifiscent creatures.... But sadly it's not just them.... It the BUYERS of these things that should be prosecuted as well! Dry up the buyers and the pitches will have no one to sell them things too!

Enjoy your time in the West Country!

Melissa Sugar said...

Enjoy the West Country. You amaze me. You always find ways to help people that most of us would never even even know needed our help. You are truly a remarkable woman full of kindness and compassion. I'm in awe of you.! Check your email on the 28th for a surprise , hopefully something to make your trip a bit more interesting. Be careful and enjoy your visit .

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

I don't think I'd like to run into a beehive either, so their fear makes sense. You'd think their thick skin wouldn't be bothered, unless they're stung in the ears. Glad to see these two species are helping each other.

Lisa said...

Never heard of a baked bean cake! Hope it's better than it sounds! Wow, what amazing work is being done in Africa, for the elephants and I would think it would help the bees as well as the people. I'll go check out the links you gave us. Great job, as usual!

Deborah Weber said...

While I'm late to the party, I have to say I found this fascinating. I love both elephants and bees and this is certainly an interesting solution to challenging situation. And what a fun cake! I hope it ushered in a fabulous start to a new year for Lenny.

J Lenni Dorner said...

Happy Birthday to Lenny. Have a nice trip! That is fascinating how easily a problem as big as an elephant can be solved.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Teresa - it's wonderful we can see these films, and see them in their environment. Bees in a swarm ... I'd be terrified of ...

@ Sherry - so pleased you enjoyed the read and share. I'm not sure about the mice - perhaps that's apocryphal? not sure!

@ Robert - isn't it a very clever simple concept - and so effective and helpful to one and all ... as you say "Everyone wins" ...

@ Murees - I know the elephants are special to Africa and poaching is truly horrific. So pleased you enjoyed the information and as you say it works ...

@ Munir - yes poverty is very rife ... but it's a wonderful continent. I wonder where he went? Thanks for your post - I'll get there sometime soon (I hope!).

@ Tara - how funny - yes I too can get 'bee-hind'! I'm so glad you enjoyed the information ... it is understandable to be worried about bees. Now you could definitely create a few critters that dinos were worried about ... ?!

@ Nila - yes I too get drawn to African stories. Bringing on board the local community so often really helps. Isn't the baked bean cake fun ...

@ Paula - I'm glad you enjoyed this post on the bees and the elephants - thanks. The cake was such a fun thought ...

@ Crystal - so glad you've come across the project at Disney. Isn't it great. Totally agree we need to live in harmony with all things ... and I suspect cockroaches too - though can understand your antipathy about those little critters.

@ Mary - so happy to read you enjoyed the read, and the intriguing way to save/ help elephants and farmers live together ...

@ Gary - good to see you ... I suspect the sting in the tail - might be in the ears or nose/trunk ... but it was fascinating to learn about. I hope Lenny has a better year ahead ...

Thankfully I didn't need my pirate accent! But I'm back and escaped ... having had a lovely time.

@ ACIL - I know the disastrous loss of these magnificent beasts is so difficult to imagine ... and understand that for money people will do anything.

@ Mason - glad you enjoyed reading about the elephants and bees ... it was an incredible talk to listen to.

@ Michael - yes .. I know I didn't go into the historical time line of ivory ... when it's mainly used for ornaments. They are trying to educate countries in Asia - but it's a difficult task.

@ Melissa - I had a lovely time and of course lots of posts to follow (nothing came through on the 28th, but I'll keep my eyes open). The talk was such a great subject to listen to and enlightened me about a part of southern Afria I love ... which I can relay on to you ...

@ Joylene - I guess the bees might sting in trunk, or ears or round the eyes - a swarm of bees seems to be very intimidating .. and provides an effective deterrent and helps protect the crops.

@ Lisa - nor had I heard of a baked bean cake .. but goddaughter made one that looked so realistic .. though it was a normal cake.

Hope you enjoyed the links ... the project is a brilliant concept - helping African farmers, as well as the elephants and bees ...

@ Debbie - I'm so glad you found the information fascinating - it really inspired me. The cake is fun isn't it ... I too hope Lenny has a better year ahead.

@ Lenni - good to see you and glad you enjoyed the post.

Cheers to you all - and thanks for coming over ... I had a lovely time - more to follow ... Hilary

Deniz Bevan said...

I love learning about this sort of thing, thank you, Hilary! Mm, I'd like some of that honey...

Happy belated birthday to Lenny!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Deniz - I also was very happy to learn about this project - it was so interesting ... good to see you - thanks - Hilary