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Cheetah (Africa)

Scientific Name: Acinonyx jubatus

Subspecies: Possibly one in Africa, as certain authors acknowledge the King Cheetah (A. j. rex) as a subspecies. Others consider it a mere individual variant or phase of the normal type.

Distribution: Stretching from Senegal in the West to Ethiopia and Somalia in the East and across a broad belt along the East African coast to northern South Africa, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia, Angola and Congok (Zaire).

Habitat: Open and semi-arid savannas, occationally fringes of Guinea savannas, but never forested country as the cheetah runs down its prey with great speed.

Description: Unmistakable. The "Grey-hound" of the cats, looking like a slender leopard with extremely long and thin legs and a small rounded head. It weighs around 40 - 70 kg and has a shoulder height of around 70 cm. General colour tawny to pale buff. Coat rather rough, entirely covered withsmall solid round black spots. Tail long, spotted for the greater part. The cheetah runs down its prey with a speed averaging 120 km/h. and it is the swiftest animal in the world. The cheetah leaves its prey when it has had enough to eat, and most often never returns. In the middle-east cheetahs are tamed and used for hunting desert gazelles, being used in driven hunts.

Hunting method: Pursch. The cheetah cannot be attracted by an already dead animal (bait), it is therefore almost always hunted in the open.

Hunting available in: Namibia and Zimbabwe.

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