India, South Africa Sign Pact for Cheetah Transfer

New Delhi: India and South African environment ministers have signed the pact that will pave the way for Cheetah transfer. India plans to get 12 cheetahs from South Africa, with the focus now shifting to logistics. The official transfer could take time, and going by the procedures, it could be by March first week that 12 Cheetahs will be transferred to Madhya Pradesh’s Kuno national park.

According to the Indian Environment ministry release of last year, “the Southern African cheetahs are found to be ancestral to all the other cheetah lineages…Hence, this should therefore be ideal (for reasons stated above) for India’s reintroduction program”

This is the 2nd major group of Cheetahs that will be arriving in India, the first group came from Namibia in September 2022. The Cheetahs were introduced in Kuno National park on Prime Minister’s birthday–17th September. This was the world’s first inter-continental transfer of large wild carnivorous animals. The 8 Cheetahs were brought from Namibia–five female and three male Cheetahs.

Cheetahs in India are being introduced under Project Cheetah, officially known as ‘Action Plan for Introduction of Cheetah in India’. Under the project, 50 Cheetahs will be reintroduced in India’s national parks over a time frame of 5 years. Remember Cheetahs, the fastest land animal was declared extinct in India in 1952.

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