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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: The effectiveness of traditional livestock husbandry as a conservation tool by reducing livestock-predator conflicts therefore enhancing coexistence with local herders, northern Kenya

Published source details

Woodroffe R., Frank L.G., Lindsey P.A., ole Ranah S.M. K. & Romañach S. (2007) Livestock husbandry as a tool for carnivore conservation in Africa's community rangelands: a case–control study. Biodiversity and Conservation, 16, 1245-1260


This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Use visual deterrents (e.g. scarecrows) to deter predation of livestock by mammals to reduce human-wildlife conflict Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

A study in 2001–2005 of bushland and savanna in Laikipia and neighbouring districts, Kenya (Woodroffe et al. 2007) found that at bomas with scarecrows positioned to deter predators, there were more, rather than fewer, carnivore attacks on livestock than at bomas without scarecrows. Scarecrows at bomas were associated with an increased risk of livestock attack by carnivores (results presented as odds ratio). The effect was strongest for leopards Panthera pardus. Scarecrows comprised cloth hung on trees or boma walls. They were present at 44% of 483 bomas (average 2.4/boma). Combining attacks on bomas with attacks on livestock herds grazing by day, the study documented 105 attacks by spotted hyenas Crocuta crocuta, 96 by leopards, 44 by African wild dogs Lycaon pictus, 35 by lions Panthera leo and 19 by cheetahs Acinonyx jubatus. From January 2001 to June 2005, eighteen local staff verified reports of livestock lost to predation and gathered data on animal husbandry practices used. Attacked bomas were compared to nearby bomas (median 323 m away) that had not been attacked.

(Summarised by Kelly Garvy )

Deter predation of livestock by mammals by having people close by to reduce human-wildlife conflict Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

A study in 2001–2005 of bushland and savanna across Laikipia and neighbouring districts, Kenya (Woodroffe et al. 2007) found that when livestock in bomas were accompanied by people, fewer animals were attacked by carnivores, but there was no similar effect for grazing herds. Livestock kept in bomas overnight were less likely to be attacked when more herders were present. Presence of herders did not reduce the risk of attack for herds grazing away from bomas in the daytime (results presented as odds ratios). The 502 grazing herds were accompanied by an average of 2.1 herders. At 491 bomas, an average of 11.3 people were present. The study documented 105 attacks by spotted hyenas Crocuta crocuta, 96 by leopards Panthera pardus, 44 by African wild dogs Lycaon pictus, 35 by lions Panthera leo and 19 by cheetahs Acinonyx jubatus. From January 2001 to June 2005, eighteen local staff verified reports of livestock lost to predation and gathered data on animal husbandry practices used. Attacked herds or bomas were compared to nearby herds (median 656 m away) or bomas (median 323 m away) that had not been attacked.

(Summarised by Kelly Garvy )

Use guardian animals (e.g. dogs, llamas, donkeys) bonded to livestock to deter predators to reduce human-wildlife conflict Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

A study in 2001–2005 of bushland and savanna in Laikipia and neighbouring districts of Kenya (Woodroffe et al. 2007) found that when livestock were accompanied by one or more domestic dogs Canis lupus familiaris, fewer were attacked by carnivores. Livestock herds grazing by day and those held overnight in thornbrush bomas were less likely to be attacked by carnivores if accompanied by domestic dogs (results presented as odds ratios). Of 502 grazing herds, 24% were accompanied by one or more dogs (average 1.3 dogs/accompanied herd). Of 491 bomas, dogs were present at 71% (average 2.0 dogs/boma). The study documented 105 attacks by spotted hyenas Crocuta crocuta, 96 by leopards Panthera pardus, 44 by African wild dogs Lycaon pictus, 35 by lions Panthera leo and 19 by cheetahs Acinonyx jubatus. From January 2001 to June 2005, eighteen local staff verified reports of livestock lost to predation and gathered data on animal husbandry practices used. Attacked herds or bomas were compared to nearby herds (median 656 m away) or bomas (median 323 m away) that had not been attacked.

(Summarised by Kelly Garvy )