Cheetah Cubs Learn Hunting by Playing

01/02/2019
Active games such as «catching up” help cubs developing hunting strategies and improving their hunting skills with time. After a long afternoon rest, mother often initiates the chase, willingly playing the role of a “victim.” Cubs demonstrate all phases of hunting – from stalking, chasing and knocking down to suffocating the “prey”. 9-year old Amani is one of the oldest and the most successful female mothers, is using every opportunity to teach her offspring. Recently, evening family game ended with a real hunt – one cub managed to catch a hare in the bush. The earlier young cheetahs learn hunting, the more chances they get to survive after the mother leaves them.

               



Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

12/25/2018
Dear Friends, Colleagues and Supporters,
Thank you for being with us! Your continuous support helps us doing our best for the wildlife conservation. May the coming year bless you with happiness, success and prosperity!



Cheetah mother adopted her sister’s son

12/22/2018
High level of sociality and strong maternity instinct altogether allow cheetah females adopt cubs of different ages. Two sisters – Naretoi and Naserian have been raised by their mother Kakenya in the Mara Triangle, but spent significant time in the neighboring Serengeti National Park. In 2017, sisters gave birth in the Mata Triangle: Naretoi in June and Naserian in September. By May 2018, Naretoi lost two out of three cubs. In the end of August 2018, she was spotted in the Northern Tanzania with her only remaining cub male, who was 14 months old at that time. In the beginning of October, we observed Naretoi in the Mara Triangle being alone, in the second trimester of pregnancy. Most likely, she left the cub being pregnant. Naserian left for Serengeti soon after cubs started following her, and appeared in the Mara Triangle in the beginning of June 2018 with the only remaining male cub (8,5 months old), who was very shy like majority of cheetahs who have been raised in Tanzania. After a short visit, Naserian disappeared for several months and in December showed up with two healthy male cubs – her own son and Naretoi’s son! Her cub is still shy and noticeably smaller than Naretoi’s son, who is more confident and occupies the space near his stepmother, demanding her attention. Both males are friendly to each other and might form a coalition after Naserian leaves them. Once she comes into estrus, she will leave the males, avoiding inbreeding. Naserian means “Peaceful and Social” and she fully lives up to her name by taking great care of her sister’s son.

           



Fast Five and Warthogs

12/12/2018
Cheetahs are opportunistic hunters and go for any available prey from hares to adult wildebeests. When the prey is small, the lucky hunter usually does not share it with the groupmates. Warthogs drive away lonely cheetahs but approaching a group of cheetahs fraught with opposite. Today, the Fast Five chased away an adult warthog, who have approached the group presumptuously at one meter. In 3.5 hours, not long before the sunset, they spotted a warthog family in over 300 m and initiated the hunt. While one was chasing a mother, the other one caught a piglet. He ate it almost alone and shared a piece with only one male. After the sunset, the group started moving towards the herd of Elands, and there is a chance that they will make a kill at night.