International Journal of
Biodiversity and Conservation

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. Biodivers. Conserv.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-243X
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJBC
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 547

Full Length Research Paper

Human carnivores conflict in Wamba District, Samburu County, Kenya

William O. Ogara
  • William O. Ogara
  • Department of Public Health, Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Nairobi, P. O. Box 29053-00625, Nairobi, Kenya.
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Nduhiu Gitahi
  • Nduhiu Gitahi
  • Department of Public Health, Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Nairobi, P. O. Box 29053-00625, Nairobi, Kenya.
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Alfred O. Mainga
  • Alfred O. Mainga
  • Department of Public Health, Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Nairobi, P. O. Box 29053-00625, Nairobi, Kenya.
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Eunice Ongoro
  • Eunice Ongoro
  • Department of Climate Change, University of Nairobi, P. O. Box 29053-00625, Nairobi, Kenya.
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  •  Received: 14 April 2016
  •  Accepted: 29 March 2017
  •  Published: 30 September 2017

Abstract

Human-livestock-carnivores conflict is a unifying theme on a complex problem of a shared environment. The study was conducted to determine the levels and nature of human wildlife conflict in Samburu County, Kenya. The data was collected from 2006 to 2009, in three community areas. A total of 266 homesteads were randomly selected for interviews and characterization. The survey was carried out using semi-structured questionnaires, direct field observations and physical measurements. Data obtained was analyzed using Genstat® Discovery (3rd Edition University of Reading), and levels of association established using chi-square. Carnivores within the ecosystem were identified using motion sensor cameras which included lion (Panthera leo), leopard (Panthera pardus), hyena (Crocuta crocuta and Hyaena hyena), jackal (Canis mesomelas), and wild-dog (Lycaon pictus). Livestock predation occurred at different sites notably homestead, water-point and grazing field. A total of 435 cattle, 801 sheep, 1138 goats, 189 donkeys, and 92 camels were killed by carnivores during the study period. The magnitude of depredation was mainly influenced by animal husbandly practices, including poorly constructed animals’ sheds and animals left in the field without headers or under the care of minors unable to scare the carnivores away. The dynamics of both wild and domestic ungulates at different seasons are considered to be possible influencing factors on carnivore diet composition, hence presenting as increased conflict during droughts.

Key words: Human-carnivore-conflict, ungulates, homestead, denning site, depredation.