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Finding a solution for the Human-Elephant Conflict in Sri Lanka

The Human-Elephant Conflict (HEC) in Sri Lanka has escalated alarmingly over the past few years. The increasing land grabs as settlements encroach on migration trails and food reserves have resulted in elephants and humans meeting on violent terms. One of our Dutch Partners, All For Nature Travel & Consultancy, has initiated a fundraiser in the interests of finding a sustainable solution for the HEC. Experiential Journeys and the Sri Lanka Wilderness Foundation (the Sustainability arm of Eco Team), along with the Academy of Eco, Wildlife & Nature Interpretation (AEWNI) have conducted the initial research into formulating a solution. Koonketiya, a remote village in the Uva Province, has been identified as a critical location where this solution is urgently required. The project will rehabilitate an existing trench situated alongside an Electric Fence, by increasing the depth of the trench and reinforcing the trench wall on the village side with a thick layer of concrete. The length of the trench is 16 km and our aim is to launch a pilot project targeting a 1 km section. Although the solution seems simple, it is an expensive undertaking for a private organisation. As the cost per kilometer is estimated to be 77,350 USD, we would like to invite any interested parties to join us and contribute to this project. 


Our policy in discouraging Animal Cruelty, Tourist Traps and Staged Tourist Shows

Animals Are Friends Too: Discouraging Animal Cruelty, Tourist Traps and Staged Tourist Shows

We at ExJ stay away from tourism experiences that are staged and involve animal cruelty and shopping traps that are contrived to exploit and deceive clients.

Even though some of the popular ‘attractions’ are not included in our programmes due to the above reasons, we have no objections in our clients making their own arrangements with our Drivers to visit these places.


Why we do not promote following attractions


Turtle Hatcheries

As this concept has serious negative aspects in terms of conservation, we do not encourage our visitors to patronize the turtle hatcheries, as not all of them are really turtle-friendly. We instead encourage them to observe turtles in their natural habitats.

Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage

When we became aware that the animal welfare standards there were questionable, we stopped encouraging our clients to visit the orphanage. We are pleased to observe that the Born Free Foundation has now adopted similar measures.

Elephant back rides – Habarana

There’s uncertainty surrounding the attitude of this place towards animal welfare. There may be a few ethical operators, but in general, we are not in agreement with how the place is run. We all would love a photo of us riding an elephant, but is a lifetime of pain caused to these magnificent mammals really worth a few fleeting likes on social media?

Traditional Village Tour with a Canoe Trip and Bullock-Carts – Habarana

This is a tourist trap where a lot of the trip is ‘staged’ for commercial purposes. Such fake touristic experiences will not give our visitors an idea of what life in the country is really like, so join us as we show you the real side of Sri Lanka. And at the end of every vacation, always ask yourself, “Did you feel that your holiday was ethical, eco-friendly, and reduced environmental impacts?”

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