The Turere LED lights are an automated lighting system of lights flashing intermittently that deters large predators – lions, leopards and cheetahs from invading livestock sheds in Kenya. This device was invented by now 12 year-old Richard Turere and modified by Michael Mbithi of FoNNaP. The system is being installed and put up in Boma shelters in Athi Kapiti by the FoNNaP Lion team. This is being done because not only is livestock predation a severe blow to rural livelihoods but it leads to indiscriminate retaliatory killings of large carnivores by the communities.
The unit’s usefulness here comes in its low cost, speedy installation and to generate faith among stock owners that predation can be mitigated without killing the predator. This buys time to study and advice on better bomas, and for the stock owner to put together resources and construct the bomas.
The Turere LED predator deterrent has shown promising results this far.
We have noted from the 34 units installed in Machakos, Kitengela and Laikipia that:
The units deter predators from entering livestock enclosures or getting close enough to stampede livestock out of the enclosure in order to prey on them. It has been noted that the lights clearly define the boundary of the enclosure and by virtue of illuminating the entire outer perimeter of the enclosure without shedding light on the inside seem to give the livestock a feeling of security that is evident in their lack of skittishness. Provide lighting for school going children who often have to study after they complete their chores when it is dark and rely on kerosene lamps that are polluting and deteriorate their sight.
It is proving to be very effective against leopard predation and lions that have learnt to climb fences, since no height of fence will stop climbing predators.
- We are confident that with a combined – predator deterrent and home lighting system, this innovation will deal with two significant issues affecting rural communities and especially pastoralists: predation and a source of energy at hand for lighting and charging phones.
By number the components illustrated in the diagram are:
1. 15 Watt, 12 Volt all weather Solar Panel.
2. 5 Amp Solar Charge Controller.
3. Two 12AH, 12Volt Sealed Lead Acid Batteries.
4. Maximum of 3 fixtures of 3 Watt, 12V LED bulbs.
5. DC 12Volt Phone charger Port.
6. 12Volt Light Flasher Unit.
7. 8 to 14 – 1Watt, 12V LED bulbs
– We use 1.5mm Oxygen-Free audio cable
Lion Project Coordinator