The Maha Mega Uyana Livestock Development Farm, a major component of the dry zone dairy industry development project conceived by the Sri Lanka Wildlife Conservation Society (SLWCS) had an official foundation laying ceremony recently at Moragaha Ulpotha in Wilgamuwa. It is also funded by Exetel Private Limited of Sydney, Australia whose main objective is to develop a project that would contribute to resolving human elephant conflict by developing dry zone diary to benefit both elephants and people.
According to a SLWCS press release, cattle and elephants do not have conflicts and will share resources in harmony, thus the goal is to develop appropriate management systems and sustainable technologies such as improved breeding, better husbandry, and rangeland and pasture management so that both cattle and elephants can continue to share resources. The SLWCS hopes to achieve these goals and objectives by establishing a model dairy project that consists of a nucleus breeding, dry zone pasture management and sustainable technology development programs.
The press release stated that the Chief Guest at the ceremony, Janaka Bandara Tennakoon, former Minister of Local Government and Provincial Councils commended the SLWCS for the pioneering work the Society has done to alleviate the socioeconomic standardsof marginalized communities whose livelihoods were threatened by escalating human elephant conflicts by providing them strategies to minimize their losses.