Africa’s Most Endangered Big Cat
Cheetahs are a critically endangered species with fewer than 7,000 left in the world. Threats to their population include habitat loss due to human encroachment, conflict with humans, high cub mortality rate and genetic abnormalities.
Perhaps best known for their speed, they are the fastest land mammals. They can accelerate from 0-90km/h in only 3 seconds or within the first 4 steps that they take. Their top speed can reach up to 120km/h but can only maintain this speed for a short period of time. A resting period of 3-5 hours after a sprint is required for their heart rate, breathing and body temperature to return to normal.
They are diurnal hunters, hunting at both sunrise and sunset. They do this to safely avoid other predators such as lions or hyenas. During the day they can see up to a distance of 5km in detail making them able to see both predators and hunters easily.
They have 1,000-3,000 spots on their body, and these spots (like a tattoo) can be found on their skin.