Cheetahs from Namibia: The eight Cheetahs have transported from Africa to India under an MOU.
On Saturday, the Project cheetah is reintroduced to India, seven decades after the country was said to be devoid of the animal. Eight African cheetahs in which five females and three males are being “re-introduced” by the central government, as part of “Project Cheetah” at the Kuno National Park in Madhya Pradesh. On September 17, the 72nd birthday of Prime Minister Narendra Modi hosted the goodwill ambassadors from the “country of the brave” to commemorate their arrival.
Three of them are males between the ages of 4.5 and 5.5. The huge cats is transported to the national park by Air Force choppers. After a Boeing 747-400 plane touched down in Gwalior at around 7:55 am on Saturday.
What is Project Cheetah?
The Indian Supreme Court authorized Project Cheetah in January 2020 as a pilot operation to reintroduce the species to India. The idea to reintroduce the cheetah was first proposed in 2009 by Indian environmentalists. The Namibia-based non-profit organization Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF), which aims to save and rehabilitate the big cat in the wild.
The Republic of Namibia and India signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in July 2020, and as part of that agreement, the Namibian government agreed to contribute the eight cats needed to start the initiative. The introduction of a wild southern African cheetah to India or any other country is unprecedented.
Why are cheetahs being reintroduced?
The government had stated earlier this year that the project’s main goal was to create thriving meta-populations in India. That would enable the cheetah to carry out its essential duty as a top predator.
The cheetah is a representative species of grasslands, and its protection aids in the preservation of other grassland species. That are part of the predator food chain.
Planning and Logistics
The last three known Asiatic cheetahs was purportedly shot dead in 1947 by Maharaja Ramanuj Pratap Singh Deo of Koriya, Surguja. Which is now called Chhattisgarh.
The cheetahs is introduce back into the wild in Madhya Pradesh, followed by Gujarat, Rajasthan, Karnataka, and Andhra Pradesh. Three cheetahs is release by the PM at Kuno, and the others will follow in stages.
The spotted cats is fit with satellite radio collars for geolocation tracking, according to the project coordinators. Dedicated monitoring teams is deploy to each cheetah.
Over the following five years, about 50 cheetahs will release in the wild.
A Boeing 747 will be used to transport the cheetahs. According to representatives from the ministry of environment, forest, and climate change, a total of Rs 96 crore has set aside for the project (MoEFCC). Indian Oil has contributed an additional Rs 50 crore to the project.
The Cheetah Conservation Fund reports that the Kuno national park now has all of the necessary amenities. According to officials, the personnel has received training, and larger predators have been relocated.
Concerns have expressed about the compatibility to introduce cheetahs with the current species. Because Kuno National Park is home to lions and leopards. Due to their small stature and the climatic and biological variations between their home country and India the new cats may be more vulnerable.