Narok, Kenya: Seven members of a family in Maasai Mara were held hostage for over four hours by a pride of lions. The lions that were accompanied by their cubs feasted on the family bull after accessing a fortified cattle pen in the compound.
The woman and her children were rescued by villagers who chased the lions away using arrows and spears. “When I opened the door at daybreak, I saw six lions outside. I closed the door and went back terrified. I didn’t notify the children who were still sleeping because I didn’t want to terrify them,” said Christine Nakola, 43, of Talek.
Nakola, whose husband was away, said she decided to stay in the manyatta waiting for neighbors to intervene. She feared raising an alarm would make the lions to break into her house. Horrifying “Our neighbours who might have noticed what was happening or wondering why the cattle were still in the pen when others had gone for grazing came to our rescue. It was a horrifying experience,” she said, adding that the lions escaped to a thicket near the national reserve.
Her neighbours said there was increased incidence of human-wildlife conflict “The conflict is being exacerbated by the dry spell which has made water and pasture to dwindle. Despite several losses, locals are co-existing peacefully with wildlife,” said Joseph Esho of Talek, who also asked that the Kenya Wildlife Service confine wild animals to the national parks and reserves.