12 cheetahs from South Africa reach Madhya Pradesh today
As many as 12 cheetahs from South Africa landed at Gwalior Airport in Madhya Pradesh on Saturday.
The cheetahs were transported in Indian Air Force’s C-17 Globemaster Cargo plane and were flown to Kuno National Park in helicopters, reports said.
Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for increasing the number of big cats in the national park. The total number of cheetahs at the park will be 20 now.
Chouhan and Environment Minister Bhupendra Yadav will release seven male and five female cheetahs into their quarantine enclosures at the Kuno National Park. The officials informed that as many as 10 quarantine enclosures have been created at the reserve for the cheetahs and as per Indian wildlife laws, they will be kept in isolation for 30 days.
The relocation of 12 cheetahs from South Africa took place three years after the Centre put forth the idea of the world’s first intercontinental translocation project which aims at reintroducing cheetahs in the country.
The Indian commission in South Africa shared the pictures of the relocation on Twitter and said the move will contribute to the survival of endangered species and achieve other ecological objectives.
Have a look at the tweet here:
In September 2022, eight cheetahs from Namibia were brought to the Kuno National Park of Madhya Pradesh. Five of the eight big cats were females aged between 2-5 years and three were males between 4.5 and 5.5 years of age.
Eight cheetahs from Namibia were relocated in Boeing 747-400 aircraft and were further taken to the national park on Air Force choppers. The wild cheetahs were released by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in an effort to revitalise and diversify India’s wildlife and its habitat, officials said in a statement.
The big cats are being relocated as part of the Cheetah Reintroduction project based on the memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed between the South African and Indian governments.