Drawing Eyes on Butts Means Survival

in science •  2 years ago

Let’s talk about mimicry.

One scientist (Neil Jordan, University of New South Wales) once observed how a lion tried to attack an impala. While he was gathering his strength for a strike, an impala quickly turned around and looked right in lion’s eye. The lion hesitated for a moment and then left.

Neil decided to put his newly obtained knowledge to good use and immediately told his Botswanan fellow farmers to use this effect to protect their cows. Basically, to draw eyes on cows’ butts.


Image Credit: Jack Dylan

Needless to say, up to that moment, Botswanan farmers tried everything in order to prevent recently restored lion population from eating local cows. Nothing worked. Only rifles were of use. However, using rifles was not an option. In the end, no one wanted to start restoring lion population again. Eyes on butts looked like an elegant solution.

An experiment was conducted. The results: a 39-head herd was attacked multiple times and 3 cows were lost; a smaller herd of 23 cows was also attacked, but lions didn’t kill any cows… Looks like it’s hard hunting and laughing simultaneously.

The idea blossomed. Volunteers. Stamps and patterns. Various shapes and colors. Usually drawn eyes last for 3-4 weeks and then you have to draw them again.

If everything is your life seems dull and meaningless, just remember that somewhere in Botswana the dream job exists – drawing eyes on butts!

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Haha maybe I should draw some on mine, so I would stop getting harassed on the street :-)