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, www.cheetah.org, How You Can Help.