A review of human-elephant ecological relations in the Malay Peninsula: Adaptations for coexistence

Lim, Teckwyn and Campos-Arceiz, Ahimsa (2022) A review of human-elephant ecological relations in the Malay Peninsula: Adaptations for coexistence. Diversity-Basel, 14 (1). ISSN 1424-2818, DOI https://doi.org/10.3390/d14010036.

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Understanding the relationship between humans and elephants is of particular interest for reducing conflict and encouraging coexistence. This paper reviews the ecological relationship between humans and Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) in the rainforests of the Malay Peninsula, examining the extent of differentiation of spatio-temporal and trophic niches. We highlight the strategies that people and elephants use to partition an overlapping fundamental niche. When elephants are present, forest-dwelling people often build above-the-ground shelters; and when people are present, elephants avoid open areas during the day. People are able to access several foods that are out of reach of elephants or inedible; for example, people use water to leach poisons from tubers of wild yams, use blowpipes to kill arboreal game, and climb trees to access honey. We discuss how the transition to agriculture affected the human-elephant relationship by increasing the potential for competition. We conclude that the traditional foraging cultures of the Malay Peninsula are compatible with wildlife conservation.

Item Type: Article
Funders: Yayasan Sime Darby[M0005.54.04], Management and Ecology of Malaysian Elephants (MEME) project
Uncontrolled Keywords: Asian elephants;Human ecology;Hunter-gatherers;Niche partitioning
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GF Human ecology. Anthropogeography
Q Science > QL Zoology
Depositing User: Ms. Juhaida Abd Rahim
Date Deposited: 03 Aug 2022 07:56
Last Modified: 03 Aug 2022 07:56
URI: http://eprints.um.edu.my/id/eprint/33566

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