Malaika’s family feeding habits

23.01.2018
Efficiency and strategies of hunting depend on the animals’ personal features (their number, age, physiological status, personal experience) and environmental conditions (landscape, weather, availability and type of prey). Malaika, who has always been efficient hunter, is turning the age of 11 and sometimes has to rely on her 18-months old cubs in getting food. However, her two sons are not very cooperative. Often only one member of the family gets a small prey and does not share it with others. Sometimes, if Malaika gets nothing from her offspring, she takes down a bigger prey to feed all the family. Sometimes, she takes her chance to catch a small animal (hare or fawn) and eat it alone, encouraging cubs to hunt. For the few last days, Malaika was sharing the area with a lonely male Mugi, and their meeting was a matter of time. In the evening Malaika chased an adult Tompson gazelle male, but missed it. However, when we reached the spot, where she had stopped, we found 4 cheetahs, and among them Mugi. He was circling around Malaika, who was greedily eating a small fawn. In a few minutes they both were feeding from the same carcass and finished it within 10 minutes. Both adults were calm and confident, which could indicate their possible previous encounters and absence of danger from either side. Moreover, behavior of the male and his presence directly at the prey, could be a sign of her kleptoparasiting from his kill. Cubs were curious and impatient; they did not get any food that evening but a lot of impressions.



New cheetahs in the Reserve – Kiraposhe’s cubs

18.01.2018
Dear friends, colleagues and partners, wishing you Merry Christmas and Happy New year! Thank you for your long-term support and continuous interest in wildlife conservation. This year was very fruitful and brought us new scientific discoveries and achievements, which would not be possible without your comrehensive assistance. We enter a new year with new plans and perspectives, and look forward to sharing with you our knowledge and new findings. Through thousands of years cheetahs escaped extinction, and now they need us on their race to survival. Only together we can save these magnificent creatures for posterity!



Merry Christmas and Happy New year!

31.12.2017
Dear friends, colleagues and partners, wishing you Merry Christmas and Happy New year! Thank you for your long-term support and continuous interest in wildlife conservation. This year was very fruitful and brought us new scientific discoveries and achievements, which would not be possible without your comrehensive assistance. We enter a new year with new plans and perspectives, and look forward to sharing with you our knowledge and new findings. Through thousands of years cheetahs escaped extinction, and now they need us on their race to survival. Only together we can save these magnificent creatures for posterity!



Cheetahs’ encounters

20.12.2017
Last week was rich in encounters of the Great Mara Five male cheetah coalition (also called Musketeers) with different cheetahs. After Mugi had left, the group met Rani. Earlier in October, she was mating with two males in the Mara Triangle, but unsuccessfully due to a high competition between brothers. Today, the group encountered Nora, who had mated a few months ago and recently lost her cubs. The key to successful mating is avoiding a competition. In some Mara male coalitions, brothers split for the time of courtship, so that only one gets a chance to mate, or males take turns with the same female. In case of a big coalition, chances to escape with a female are low. However, today one male used his chance when other members went for hunting. They all noticed that their partner was mounting a female from far distant and rushed to participate. Unfortunately, soon after copulation a lioness appeared in the field, attracted by loud cheetahs’ vocalizations, and dispersed them. Thereby, males lost visual contact with Nora and have been searching for her until darkness loudly calling.

               



Mugi’s decision

13.12.2017
This morning started the same way as it ended up yesterday, but with two exceptions: one of the missing members of a coalition joined the group, and Mugi became self-confident – he initiated several conflicts. The group spent over 24 hours in the same bush, and today, males were sleeping at a close distance from each other. Mugi had many opportunities to leave but most probably decided to stay with the males. It is known, that cheetah brothers can accept unrelated males if they are beyond 20 months. If finally Mugi will build bond with the 5 males, he will become an exception, because he is already 3 years old and the group consists of unrelated members. The last member of the coalition has been missing for two days now. We found him in 3,7 km from a group intensively calling and visiting those areas he had been with his coalitionmates. Exhausted, he was dozing, but as soon as the wind was over, he again was calling to different directions and listening attentively awaiting for the response. He was checking marking points that they had all marked before, and when could not find a fresh mark there, changed the direction of the search. Just after the sunset, we left him walking towards the group followed by a hyena. Thank you Anthony (Mara Sarova camp) for leading us to the male!Interestingly, it was the same male who had been lost in October!