Study Tour for Cheetah revival Plan Officials; Alternative Habitat Revealed

BHOPAL: Officers involved in Cheetah revival project to be flown to South Africa’ Namibia on a study tour.

The decision was taken during a meeting on Monday. Union Forest Minister Bhupender Yadav said he will visit the KNP, located in Sheopur district, on June 6. Speaking about the project, he said “money and all logistic support for the safety, conservation and revival of the felines will be provided”.

He further informed that the Gandhi Sagar Sanctuary in MP was being readied as an alternative home for the cheetahs.

Chandra Prakash Goyal, the Director General of Forest Ministry, who was in Bhopal to attend the National Tiger Conservation Authority’s (NTCA) meeting on Monday said, “The Madhya Pradesh government has informed that the Gandhi Sagar Wildlife Sanctuary will be ready to ready to welcome the cheetahs by November this year, but the way preparations are going on, I believe that the habitat will be ready to receive the big cats before that. Kuno has spece to accommodate 21 cheetahs while 20 cheetahs were introduced there. After that, four cubs were born there. Three cubs and three mature cheetahs have died so far at Kuno, but the number will increase in future.”

According to sources Rs 20 crore will be spent for fencing a 80 sq km area and for developing grassland at the Gandhi Sagar Wildlife Sanctuary, which is spread over an area of 368 sq km.

Since March six Cheetahs have died out of the 20 introduced into the Indian wildlife system under Project Cheetah.

A total 20 cheetahs were translocated from Namibia (8) and South Africa (12) in two phases – on September 17, 2022 and February 18, 2023 respectively. Out of these, three have died so far. Three out of the four cubs born to a Namibian cheetah have also died, while the fourth one has been kept under special observation after its health condition deteriorated.

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