Due to conflict with livestock, lions have been in steep decline in most of Africa, threatened with extinction in all but the largest protected areas. In southern Kenya, the Laikipia Predator Project (of Living with Lions) and Kilimanjaro Lion Conservation Project are working to reverse the recent decimation of lion numbers due to spearing by Masai warriors. The work of the Laikipia Predator Project has demonstrated that living with lions is not difficult – the ancient livestock management methods developed by African herding tribes a millennia ago still work well if properly implemented. Unfortunately, these methods are being lost to modernization and predators are being exterminated as a result. With biologically sound management, this trend can be reversed wherever trophy hunting and tourism give the lion financial value. However, there has never been any attempt at scientific management of lion populations.
Based on several years of research, the LPP has developed comprehensive plans for managing lions in livestock-producing rangelands with the intention of increasing lion numbers while decreasing their impact on livestock. They are working to reintroduce sustainable use as a way to create economic value to the wildlife of Kenya. Because many Laikipia lions are shot as problem animals every year, management principles can be broadly applied throughout Africa, including hunting blocks. To effectively manage the Laikipia lion population and reverse the current lion slaughter in the Masai, the LPP needs more personnel, more radio collars, another vehicle, a light plane for radio tracking and transport between projects, and lion hounds for use in research and Problem Animal Control.