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Monday, 28 September 2009

Choose No Beating Around the Bush: Help the Cheetah Win!

The Cheetah Conservation Fund's Bush Project has been chosen as one of 12 finalists for World Challenge 2009, a global initiative of BBC World News and Newsweek, in association with Shell, that highlights projects showing enterprise and innovation at the grassroots level.

On Oct. 3 and 4, CCF's Bush Project (which makes Bushblok, a clean-burning fuel log made from the invasive acacia bush that is overrunning the cheetah's natural habitat) will be featured in a half-hour segment on BBC World News. To find the broadcast time for your area, check BBC World News' schedule at

To learn more about how Bush Project restores habitat, produces an alternative, clean-burning source of fuel, and provides jobs, please visit

The winner of the challenge is selected by popular online vote (one vote per email address). Voting opens on Monday, Sept. 28, and closes Nov. 13.

Vote for the Bush Project at and ask others to do the same.

Here is how you can help:

- Teachers: Encourage students and other teachers to vote.

- Parents: share the challenge with the school systems (or teachers) their children are part of.

Every vote is important because a vote for CCF is a vote for the Cheetah.

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Thank you for your support!

Thursday, 24 September 2009

NamibRand Male Cheetahs - Update 24/09/09

The five males are doing well and in good health. Still around Keerweder but it seems like they have decided not to visit the guest house anymore, this week they have not been there. From today’s observation, they are on Wolwedans side. They have hunted a young oryx (I have not measured the horn length or width, because the boys were still in the bush were the carcass was but it looks young) today late in the morning I guess.

I found the carcass fresh but fully eaten with only the head, legs and ribs were left. The end of the ribs was chewed as usual. I found Lindt lying in the bush next to the kill while the others were lying in another bush 100 m away from the kill site, but the others joined him later as I drove next to them. The poor things were full and found it difficult to walk as they walked from the bush where they were resting to the kill site.

That was all for today, I will be in touch for the update!



PS – The attached map includes a week and a half worth of data for the boys. As for the female, she is moving around quite a bit at the moment and generally in a southern direction but still remaining on Zaries.

Monday, 14 September 2009

About the new cubs

I thought I’d share with you how the newest arrivals, Phil, Tony, Polly and Mischief, who came to CCF last month, as written by my colleague Leigh Whelpton:

We recently received a phone call from a farmer down South.  He said that a female cheetah got caught in his fence and that she had died despite the farmer’s best efforts to save her.  He called us at the Cheetah Conservation Fund because this cheetah had a collar and an ear tag.  We were able to identify which female cheetah they had on their farm because we had released her nearby a year or so before, and she had a GPS collar on which had been telling us where she went. 

We thought that this particular female cheetah had cubs because she had stayed in one place for quite a few days, which usually means that a cheetah is giving birth.  This thought was proven to be correct because one of the farm workers had seen cubs nearby the female cheetah.  He said that when he came near they had scampered off into the bush.  We knew that if we didn’t take action the cubs would die, so two CCF staff members took down a trap cage and waited patiently until all four cubs finally went into the cage. 

Once they had all of the cubs they drove back to the Cheetah Conservation Fund and we gave each cub a medical checkup.  We determined whether they were boys or girls, vaccinated them, gave them fluids, took blood samples, and put in a transponder microchip so that each one would always have a unique identification.  They were not happy to have lost their mother, and were hissing, spitting, and snarling at us.  Also, all four cubs were completely covered in burrs!!  Poor little things!!  One of the cubs needed stitches, but other than that they all looked like they were in very good health. 

During their check-ups, we found out that we have three boys and one girl, all about three months old.  They all weigh about 4.5 to 5 kilograms (10 to 11 pounds), and are slightly bigger than a housecat.  We are very fortunate to have been able to save the lives of these little guys, and it is all thanks to the hard work and dedication of our amazing team of staff and volunteers!!

All four are growing fast and happy. Please consider sponsoring these beautiful cubs. Visit our web site,, How You Can Help.


Friday, 4 September 2009

The NamibRand male cheetahs - update to 04/09/09

The boys are still moving on their route which is between Draaihoek, Keerweder and Wolwedans (Zebra dam). According to the satellite collar upload, now they are spending much time on Wolwedans side than at the Old cheetah pen (Keerweder), although they are still visiting the pen and mark it whenever they are around it.

I was lucky today; I found their kill (one of the objective for my project) that they made in the morning I guess. They have hunted an adult female springbok. We found a fresh carcass in the afternoon when I was tracking them. The carcass is fully consumed (only bones left), with the end soft bones of the ribs chewed. They were still in the same area but some few metres away from the kill site. All resting, full of meat and lazy as well, we could only see their heads rising up and down.

That was all for today, I will be in touch for more updates on these boys.

A good weekend to all……




Thursday, 3 September 2009

NamibRand Female Cheetah update - as of 2/Sept

There's no change with regards to the female.  She is still on Zaries and still in the same general area.  In the past 6 days she has walked in a loop and ended up more or less where she started.


NamibRand Boys - map and update as of 2/Sept

The satellite collar upload worked normally this week and we have good data for the last nine days.  I'm including a map covering the period from August 26th - September 2nd to take advantage to all of the new data.

While they seem to be remaining in the same general area, the boys are spending less time in the vicinity of the old pens.  


Wednesday, 2 September 2009

NamibRand male cheetahs: 29/08; 30/08; 01/09; 02/09

Well, not much information about the boys as I have not been able to spend much time with them the past few weeks to observe their behaviour or daily activities. Although I have not been able to find their kills, I am sure they are hunting regularly and this is what we must be worried about if they are hunting or not. Still wondering in the same area, they were resting in the Boscia tree between the cheetah pen and the road from Keerweder to the main road when we saw them in the afternoon. Kia was sitting up very observant while the others were lying down relaxed and undisturbed.

They have not marked the guest house this week, although two of them made a turn at the house yesterday. This time they did not mark (urinate or defecate) on the stoep or wall, they just walked past and sniffed around. We have set up two crushed chilli bag on the inside of the fence next to the guest house and applied some lemon juice on the wall and poles just to see if we can get them away from the place.

That is all for today. Thanks,