Dr. Neil Jordan, a conservation biologist from UNSW’s Centre for Ecosystem Science, has started to paint eyes on the rear-ends of cows to prevent lion attacks.
For centuries and millennia, people have struggled with lions taking their livestock. Some communities choose to address lion attacks by killing the lions. Today, when lions are an endangered species, killing them is often controversial. Communities that recognize this problem have tried to come up with solutions. Some have created fencing, others have invented systems of lights that keep the lions at bay. Dr. Neil Jordan has discovered a truly effective and inexpensive way of deterring lions from attacking cattle, paint big eyes on their butts!
Scientists like Dr. Jordan have discovered that some predators (especially large feline predators) will not attack if they feel they have been spotted. Some species of butterflies have spots that look like eyes, possibly to deter predators. Astoundingly, workers in India discovered putting face masks on the back of their head prevented tiger attacks.
Dr. Jordan and his team will continue to test this hypothesis. By splitting herds and painting half the cows and leaving the other rumps bare, they will be able to figure out based on GPS and real lion attacks whether or not the eyes are an effective method.
Personally, I kind of like this change. Maybe they should add lashes?
Scientists Draw Eyes on the Butts of Cows to Protect Them from Lions | Oddity Central