5 Cheetahs from SA to be Released into the Wild in Madhya Pradesh

BHOPAL: As per reports, cheetahs translocated from South Africa will be released into the wild in MPs Kuno National Park next week. Forest Department officials said that only five out of the 8 bought in the first batch in September will be released while the others three would spend some more time in their enclosures.

Brothers Elton and Freddie will be released first,” an MP forest official said. Speaking about the release of Sasha, Siyaya, and Savannah, a forest official on anonymity said, “These three may not be able to adjust to the tough wildlife (yet). They need to hone their skills.” The duo are in their 6sq km predator-free enclosures, and not fit for the wild yet.

Indian wildlife expert YV Jhala, who led the team that visited Namibia ahead of the translocation, had written to the environment ministry in August last year advising that the three cheetahs not be translocated, another official of the forest department said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on September 17 last year released the eight cheetahs from Namibia, in the first leg of the translocation project after a decades-long effort to restore a species that was declared extinct in India in 1952, owing to poaching and shrinking grasslands.

Of the three cheetahs bred in captivity, Sasha suffered a renal infection last month and is now recovering in quarantine, an official of the Cheetah Task Force said.

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