Even though we are in lockdown conservation does not stop. This week the Amakhosi Team headed by Alwyn Wentzel reserve general manager along with EWT (Endangered Wildlife Trust) headed out into the Amakhosi Reserve in search of 3 of our cheetahs.
The mission was to dart the adult female with her two 18month old cubs, the cubs (1 male and 1 female) are reaching an age where they become independent of their mother, so we decided it was time and we needed to capture and relocate the young male to another game reserve the reserve chosen by the EWT was Dinokeng GR in Gauteng. All 3 cheetah were darted by our vet Dr Mike Toft , then the work began to re-collar and genetically sample the mother and her female cub for effective monitoring. Amakhosi is part of the EWT Cheetah Meta Population Management Plan managed by Mr Vincent vd. Merwe and he ensures that there is a healthy exchange of cheetah genetics between game reserves across South Africa and beyond.
Cheetahs are by far the most endangered big cat in Africa and its critical to manage their genetics to ensure that inbreeding and genetic diseases don’t affect them more than it has already. Our young male will hopefully settle in and contribute to the population in Dinokeng, The EWT program will also replace the male we donated with another young male towards the end of the year.
EWT to learn more of what EWT to go to their page https://www.ewt.org.za
All the best, stay safe – The Amakhosi Team