Wild cheetahs visit cheetah centre

The Ann van Dyk Cheetah Centre in De Wildt is currently home to wild cheetah cubs that had been removed from a farm at a farmer’s request. The cubs will be relocated to other suitable areas soon.

Cheetahs from the Ann van Dyk Cheetah Centre in the Paarl where they will be taught to fend for themselves in the wild.

“In April we welcomed four wild sub adult cheetahs to the centre after they were removed from a farm in the North West. The cubs were living as free roamers with their mother on the farm. The farmer contacted the Cheetah Outreach Trust to find a solution for his problem of too many cheetah on the farm. With the help of Cheetah Outreach Trust, Dr Peter Caldwell and Ashia Cheetah Conservation, the mother was captured and collared and released back on the farm on request of the farmer. The sub-adult cubs, two males and two females, were brought to The Ann van Dyk Cheetah Centre for holding until their re-release,” said Petro van Eeden, manager at the centre.

“These are wild cheetah and under the protection of nature conservation. Since they first came here, we have avoided any human contact with them. They are housed at the farthest corner of the cheetah centre and only see humans when we take them food. They are wild and hide when we approach.”

The two males were collared and relocated to the Kalahari last week and a suitable environment for the two females will hopefully be found soon.

The centre has last week also successfully relocated eight captive-born sub-adult cheetahs to Ashia Cheetah Conservation in Paarl for their eventual release into the wild. Captive-bred cheetahs have to undergo a ‘journey to the wild’ where they have to develop their natural hunting skills and adapt to a ‘wild’ environment where they fend for themselves.