Other names: Hunting leopard
Latin name: Acinonyx jubatus
size: 1.2 - 1.5m
mass: 50 - 70kg
Older: 6 - 8 years
Appearance: black dots on golden yellow coat
Sexual dimorphism: Yes
Nutrition type: Carnivore
food: Antelope, gazelle
distribution: Africa, Southwest Asia
original origin: Africa
Sleep-wake rhythm: diurnal
habitat: Savannah, steppe
natural enemies: other big cats
sexual maturity: with 2 - 3 years of age
mating season: all year round
gestation: 90 - 95 days
litter size: 1 - 3 cubs
social behavior: Loners
Threatened with extinction: Yes
Further profiles of animals can be found in the Encyclopaedia.
Interesting about the cheetah
- The cheetah describes a genus within the real cat and is a close relative of the cougar.
- Today it is exclusively native to the African continent, where it can be found in some eastern countries such as Namibia and Botswana. It has long been eradicated in South Asia, North and South Africa, and the Arabian Peninsula.
- In his homeland, the cheetah inhabits only treeless steppes and savannahs with tall grass and hills, which allow him to overlook his hunting area.
- With large, forward-looking eyes, the cheetah recognizes its prey over long distances.
- Cheetahs stand out because of their unique among wild cats body with a slender, narrow trunk and very long limbs. They reach body lengths of up to one and a half meters and a weight of up to seventy kilograms, with males being larger and significantly heavier.
- Its long legs allow the cheetah to travel at a speed of up to 110 kilometers per hour. This makes him the fastest land-based mammal in the world.
- His hard pads on the soles allow him to run fast. Since he can not feed his claws, he uses them while running to repel his paws from the ground three times a second and suddenly change direction in the run.
- However, the cheetah can not keep its top speed for a long time, because after only 800 meters it gradually slows down.
- Since cheetahs are comparatively weak due to their slender stature, they consistently avoid conflicts with larger cats of prey.
- During the race, the cheetah takes in large amounts of air through the noses, which are larger than average for wildcats, in order to optimally supply the muscles with oxygen.
- Cheetahs are diurnal animals that live and hunt as loners. Only for the rearing of the young, individual animals sometimes join together to form smaller groups of females and males.
- Cheetahs feed primarily on young or weak antelopes and gazelles, which they capture in the course of the hunt. These shoot them through a targeted bite in the throat.
- The kitten are occasionally captured by larger cats such as lions or leopards, more rarely hyenas. Mature cheetahs have no predators due to their high speeds.
- Young cheetahs accompany their mother already at the age of several weeks for the first time in the hunt. After first learning by observing, they participate actively at the age of a few months, but can only survive on their own when they grow up.
- Cheetahs have a life expectancy of up to eight years in the wild, in captivity they can be twice as old.