The number of cheetahs arriving at Kuno National Park has increased to 12.
The 12 cheetahs from South Africa have arrived at Kuno National Park in Madhya Pradesh, India, and we are delighted to share this news. This represents a significant step towards the reintroduction of cheetahs in India, where they have been extinct for more than 70 years.

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Here are the main takings from this important occasion:

Why bring back cheetahs to India?

The fastest land animal, cheetahs are admired for their grace, agility, and beauty. Between the Sundarbans in the east and the Thar Desert in the west, they once roamed the entire Indian subcontinent. However, cheetahs vanished from India in the 1950s as a result of habitat loss, hunting, and poaching. They are now classified as “vulnerable” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and extinct in 25 of the 46 countries where they once lived.

Cheetah reintroduction in India is an essential conservation measure to rebuild the nation’s biodiversity and ecosystem balance. In addition, cheetahs are anticipated to increase tourism, generate employment, and increase public awareness of the need to conserve wildlife.

Which national park is Kuno?

In the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh’s Sheopur district, there is a wildlife refuge called Kuno National Park. It has a 345 square mile area and is home to many endangered species, including Indian wolves, striped hyenas, sloth bears, and leopards. As Kuno has a similar arid landscape and prey base to their native habitat in Africa, it is regarded as one of the best potential habitats for cheetahs in India.

How many cheetahs are returning to India?

  • In the next five years, the Indian government wants to bring back at least 50 cheetahs. A male and a female cheetah were part of the first group of cheetahs relocated from Namibia to Kuno in 2020. Three males, four females, and five sub-adults from the most recent group of 12 cheetahs were flown from the South African Laohu Valley Reserve to Kuno on a chartered flight.

What are the difficulties and dangers of reintroducing cheetahs to India?

Cheetah reintroduction in India is a complicated and difficult process that involves numerous stakeholders, including the federal and state governments, wildlife experts, local communities, and non-governmental organizations. These are a few of the main risks and challenges.

  • making sure the cheetahs that have been relocated are secure and comfortable in their new surroundings.
  • avoiding conflicts with other animals that use the same habitat and food supply as cheetahs, like wolves, tigers, and leopards.
  • addressing the worries and interests of the locals, who depend on the park’s natural resources for their livelihoods and may hold divergent opinions about the conservation of wildlife.
  • assessing and reducing the potential effects of illness, climate change, and human activity on cheetah populations and their habitat.

What are the next steps for cheetah conservation in India?

  • It will take time and effort to successfully reintroduce cheetahs to India, and cooperation from many different parties is necessary. The following actions will help preserve cheetahs in India:.
  • keeping an eye on the cheetahs that have been relocated, both in terms of their health and behavior, and how they fit in with the local wildlife.
  • expanding the cheetah’s habitat and population in additional possible locations in India.
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