AKTF works hard to save predators in the Mara ecosystem by reducing human-predator conflict by building predator-resistant livestock enclosures (bomas) that protect livestock from wildlife attacks. Since 2010, with support of National Geographic’s Big Cats Initiative (NGBCI), Oracle, Eden Wildlife Trust, and other generous donors, we have installed approximately 750 fortified bomas by reinforcing existing bomas with 8’ chainlink fence and by constructing new bomas with metal corners and professional fencing methods. These bomas have been very successful in protecting the livestock and thus preventing revenge killings of big cats, hyenas, and honey badgers. If conflict between humans and big cats continues, the wildlife will lose.
AKTF has partnered with Eden Wildlife Trust who are generously providing posts to be used with our chainlink and steel corner posts to ensure stronger and more secure bomas. These wooden posts are used along the fence line in conjunction with the metal corners and high-tensile fencing wire to create a very sturdy and durable structure.
The growing human population has encroached into wildlife habitat and caused an escalation in human-predator conflict. Local communities living adjacent to protected areas now have less tolerance for predation as livestock losses become more frequent. They are taking the law into their own hands by killing the predators. The Maasai warriors’ tradition of killing lions to prove their bravery continues even though it is also against the law. Due to the illegal bushmeat trade, which has decimated the natural prey for big cats, predation on domestic livestock has become more prevalent. In short, big cats are under siege. Historically, Maasai communities have co-existed with wildlife in a harmonious way. As their lifestyle changes to a more sedentary one, the result has been an inevitable increase in conflict with wildlife. Coupled with that, the ongoing increase in livestock numbers exerts increasing pressure on natural habitats that support the dwindling prey base of the big cats.
AKTF aims to continue working with several conservancies in the Mara region by providing training and means to reduce conflict between humans and big cats. We do this through community meetings, workshops and films showing how the Maasai can co-exist with the predators