During April of 2022, the adult female cheetah on the reserve gave birth to 6 cubs. One sadly died for unexplained reasons; the rest of her cubs grew into beautiful sub-adults.

Now that the cubs are old enough to live without their mother, it was time to move them to new reserves to spread out their genes. Cheetah’s have a relatively low genetic variability due to living through two bottleneck events.

Bottleneck events are when a species population rapidly shrinks, leaving few individuals to spread out their genes when mating. This usually results in animals breeding with relatives, resulting in inbreeding, which decreases the gene pool.

Lack of genetic variability creates a higher risk of mutations being passed down & makes it harder for populations to adapt to changes in their environment.

Relocating these sub-adults gives cheetahs the opportunity to lead to healthier populations by spreading valuable genetics, promoting genetic diversity, and minimizing inbreeding.

We here at VETPAW feel so lucky to be able to participate in this effective management tool practiced on the reserve that helps protect cheetahs for future generations.