This past week we were in Puros Conservancy, based out of Tomakas and Puros (town) surveying livestock owners. Our surveys primarily focus on the change in livestock numbers during the ongoing drought and the effects of carnivores, particularly lions, on residents’ livestock.
This past year, Puros was home to a series of human-lion conflict incidents that received some attention beyond the region. (See desertlion.info for more information.) It was a privilege and an important part of this project, to spend time with the farmers in Puros who have lived with challenges of almost daily encounters with lions. While there we had a healthy range of perspectives about the challenges of living with lions and spoke to many locals keenly interested in finding productive ways forward whereby the conservancy, the government, and NGOs can work together to support the goals of each.
Thanks in particular to Japi Uararavi and all the residents of Tomakas for their hospitality and sharing their time with us. Against the backdrop of ongoing human-lion conflict in Kunene it was refreshing to remember the importance of folks sitting together to work through difficult problems.