Hi, so right now I am doing my second volunteer project with volunteer southern africa and this is the cheetah project. So I am going to show you all the things that we get up to and what we do on this project.
Are you excited sky? So the two main goal of the living with cheetah program is to: 1) breeding cheetah to strengthen their gene pool and 2) to raise them, teach them how to hunt and release them back into the wild.
So the first thing we did was of course get to know the cats. Now, not all the cats can be approached. Several of the cheetahs born at the project have been born wild and are still wild, but others have been hand reared, which means they were raised by human touch, so they can be handled, pet and essentially tamed.
When he gets up, he is done and we don't force him to to. He get one interaction per day. This is kiara and her brother kenya over there.
And they are 10 months old. And of this litter of 5, there are only 2 that we hand reared. How this process works is that these little guys are now learning to hunt and when they are old enough and are hunting well enough, we release them with the other siblings and they will eventually teach these siblings how to hunt now, these hunting skills are very important because the only way a cheetah can be successfully released back into the wild is if it knows how to hunt.
Now this is a step-by-step process that varies with age. First, we start off with boxes, then we move into running lores. After that, we introduce them to the open field to get them starting to chase and run after live prey.
However, our attempt at catching aerial shots of cheetah hunting didn't go quite as planned, since they they ended up being more fascinated with the drone so right now it is 6 in the morning and we are getting ready to take the big cheetah out on a hunt, so they are going to be hunting for their food here on the game reserve.
Wish them luck. Just a heads up, slight graphic warning. We are going to drive them to a point where we think there is enough antelope, offload the cats and walk them to a point.
Then we are going to release the harnesses and we are going to stalk, go down to the ground, because there is no use us having our heads up while they are stalking and we are walking like a bunch of turds.
We are going to go down. We don't want the antelope to see us. We will watch. As soon as they take off, we chase on foot.
We run. A very successful kill. I tried to run as fast as I could but apparently running with cheetahs is very difficult it's a learning curve and in about years time they will be ready to be put back in the wild.
As long as they know how to hunt, we have to release them. When we are not teaching cheetah how to hunt, we are working with them in other stimulating ways like walks seriously, does she know what she is doing? Just taking cheetah for a walk.
It's cool. And you lost a cheetah. Also, cleaning up after them. And not just the cheetah, there are other adorable animals at the project. So here is a sole survivor of a fire.
Her entire family was killed. They generally have long tails, he lost his. Aside from that, he is very awesome. He looks for eagles very often so pretty much zulu and the banded mongoose lulu she is an escape artist of note.
Zulu. That one is lulu when someone else is holding him. He can get a bit zealous. Right now you are his property. Hi lulu. So what we are about to do now is we are going to go fetch kira.
She is our free run cheetah. The reason she free runs is that she sadly can't be released. Now she can't be released is because when she was 4 days old her mother accidentally stepped on her and broke both shoulders and an elbow.
Another awesome part of living with cheetah project is the game drives on their private reserve. So, at the waterfall we stopped at for lunch on our game drive.
Look at it. I think some people are going swimming. Very possible. Not me though. I don't think that is going to happen. No, no.
Thank you for watching. If you enjoyed living with cheetah programs give it a thumbs up. And if you want to see the other program I did. Living with big cats click on the video below.
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