The lion population on the Laikipia commercial ranches is an important source population of lions for the entire region. In the past two years, drought conditions in the wider area have led to some communities encroaching on private lands in the search of grass. This has resulted in increased human-lion conflict, as the lions on the ranches have encountered more livestock. Lions that had rarely or never killed livestock previously began killing them regularly, creating a propensity for killing livestock.
After the rains returned, community livestock herds returned to their traditional grazing grounds, yet the lions continued targeting commercial ranch livestock. This led to many of Laikipia’s lions being seen as ‘problem animals’, ...
Until now, Ewaso Lions has engaged warriors, elders, and children. When women from the area were keen to get involved in conservation, they approached us for conservation training and education. Now, Ewaso Lions is working with Samburu women in a number of ways through our new programme, Mama Simba – which means Mothers of Lions.
Samburu women have rarely been actively included in conservation activities in northern Kenya. Yet, they spend a significant amount of time in wildlife areas as their demanding lifestyle includes fetching water, collecting firewood, and looking after livestock at times, which means they often come in contact with wildlife. And because women remain in the villages for much of the time while warriors and elders ...
Sometimes solutions to human-lion conflict can be found in unlikely places. You may have heard of Richard Turere: the 13 year-old Kenyan boy who invented an ingenious system for safely keeping lions from attacking livestock. Knowing that lions were scared of people carrying torches (flashlights) at night, he rigged a series of automated flashing LED light bulbs around his livestock pen. The blinking lights trick lions and other predators into thinking a herdsman is present, so they don’t attack livestock.
These “Lion Lights” have been fine-tuned and scaled up, and are being used in various parts of Kenya. Ewaso Lions currently uses five Lion Lights in two different areas, and so far they have been 100% successful in keeping livesto...
Last week, we received word that a lion had killed a camel in the Westgate Conservation Area. We went to investigate and found the carcass of an adult female camel.
During the night, the camel and her calf had been chased out of their enclosure (or “boma”) by another camel. She ran into the Conservation Area, where she was killed by the lioness. The calf ran back to the village and was attacked by hyenas. She managed to survive, but suffered some severe injuries.
We went to the village to speak to the owner of the camels. We learned that the boma was in fact left open and the entrances were not entirely covered, which is how the camels easily escaped. We helped treat the camel’s deep gashes.
This was the second lion-camel incident ...