Blog Index Watching Cheetahs grow

3 Months old...

3 Months old...

2 Weeks old..

2 Weeks old..

Proud Mother!

Proud Mother!

Heading out into the world..

Heading out into the world..

Trying to keep up with mom!

Trying to keep up with mom!

Learning to hunt...

Learning to hunt...

A successful hunt!

A successful hunt!

On the morning of the 13th of May two of our Rangers came across a very special site... one of our female cheetahs with four new born cubs. The small wriggling cubs were blindly squirming around trying to drink milk whilst mom took turns to clean each. It was estimated that they were born the night before.

Since then they have been monitored once a week by our Ecologist Liesl Vorster or our Wildlife Monitor Ruan. Each week a Ranger would go along to have the opportunity to witness the special intimate moments of mother and cubs before the cubs are strong enough to move around with her.

At the age of two months,  ranger Jannie Swanepoel spotted the female cheetah walking quite a distance from where she had her den sites. Soon afterwards he noticed the dark little cubs running behind her, playing and exploring their new environment. Unfortunately there were only three. The loss of a cub often happens during this vulnerable stage when the mother is out hunting. Just a week before Ecologist Liesl Vorster noted that the one cub looked smaller, possibly a runt.

Cheetah cubs can fall prey to numerous larger predators as well as a sudden cold spell. What happened to the cub is unknown, but we are confident that the surviving three cubs will grow up as strong as her previous litters.

Until the cubs are four months of age, sightings of the cheetah and her cubs will be limited to one safari vehicle at a time to ensure that not too much pressure is put on them. As they grow and become more relaxed with the vehicles, we will allow two vehicles per sighting and eventually walking safaris to view them.

So far they have been seen on springbuck kills, playing in the Karoo scrub and stalking the vehicles. Their curiosity is closely watched by their mother, allowing them to learn and calling them back when they stray too far.

As guides it is a privilege to be able to watch such an amazing animal as the cheetah grow from new born cub to a fully grown hunting machine. We hope that you will be able to share some of these experiences of their growth with us.



Comments

Your name:
Email Address:
Your Comment:
 

There are currently no comments to this blog.

Back to top