Herders Spear 11 Lions To Death In ‘Retaliatory Killing’ After Loss Of Livestock

Herders Spear 11 Lions To Death In ‘Retaliatory Killing’ After Loss Of Livestock


Kenyan government officials are expressing concern after 11 lions were speared to death in retaliatory killings after lions reportedly raided villages in search of food, killing livestock.

Kenya’s Tourism minister Peninah Malonza met with locals in the Mbirikani area on May 14 urging them not to spear lions wandering into their villages after the death of 11 this weekend, including one of the country’s oldest, 19-year-old Loonkiito, CBS News reported.

“The incident unfolded after a group of nine subadult lions broke into a livestock enclosure near Mbirikani town on the night of May 12th, killing 12 goats and a dog. Big Life Foundation’s community wildlife rangers responded immediately, pushing the lions away from the homestead. The lions then moved into Big Life’s fenced headquarters nearby,” conservation group, Big Life Foundation, said in a statement.

While wildlife officials were able to drive off three of the lions, six remained within Big Life’s enclosure awaiting assessment for relocation. Officials had planned on transporting the lions away from the compound under the cover of darkness. Throughout the day, however, an angry crowd, armed with spears, surrounded the facility and killed the lions, the statement continued.

The six killed brought the total of lions killed that week to 11, CBS News reported.

“While we are relieved there were no human injuries, this isolated but tragic incident is a harsh illustration of the challenges in ensuring co-existence between human and wildlife. Big Life remains committed to the wellbeing of both humans and animals in the Greater Amboseli ecosystem and will continue to work with the broader community who supports conservation initiatives as we recover from this event,” the statement continued.

Malonza encouraged villagers to contact wildlife service officials in the event lions approach their homes and livestock. The Kenyan government and conservation groups have a compensation program for herders whose livestock is killed by wild animals, according to CBS News.


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