First Two Cheetahs Released in Wild in MPs Kuno Park

BHOPAL: Two Namibian cheetahs, Oban and Aasha, were on Saturday successfully released into the wild at Madhya Pradesh’s Kuno National Park, nearly six months after they were brought to India, an official said. They were kept in “hunting enclosures” at the park, he added.

The 5 year old Oban was captured in the morning while 3.5 year old Asha was captured in the afternoon. “Both are healthy and doing well in the enclosures. They hardly moved in the forest after the release. They are roaming near their 6 sq km enclosures, which were predator free, where they spent about five months, said a forest official.

Announcing the development on Saturday, Union environment and forest minister Bhupendra Yadav tweeted: “Big day for the cheetah reintroduction programme undertaken because of the decisive leadership of PM Shri @narendramodi ji!. Two cheetahs (one male and one female) have been released into the wild in Kuno National Park from their enclosures. Both cheetahs are doing good.”

Asha is the first cheetah from Namibia who was released into a Boma enclosure by PM Modi last year. “They were released into the wild by forest officials on Saturday, and now their location will be tracked with the help of satellite collars. Forest guards will take care of them initially without interfering in their routine. They will not be allowed to go outside the forest,” said Uttam Sharma, field director at the KNP.

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