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CHEETAH

CHEETAHAcinonyx jubatus

Conservation Status: Vulnerable

Habitat loss, prey depletion, human persecution.   SSP species.

statusbar_vulnerable copy

CLASS

Mammalia

ORDER

Carnivora

FAMILY

Felidae

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General Characteristics:

Color: 

Coat tawny with small, round black spots; tear stripes on face 

Size:

44 – 53”; tail 26 –33” 

Weight:

86 – 143 lbs

Average Lifespan: 

10-12 years

Captive Lifespan:

Up to 18 years

Distribution:

Sub-saharan Africa, north Africa, Iran 

Habitat:

Savanna, dry forest 

Reproduction:

Mating: 

Polygamous; year round 

Gestation/Incubation:

90-98 days 

Litter/Clutch Size:

1-6 

Mature: 

Weaned 3-4 mos; dependent on mother until 14-18 mos 

 

Diet:

Medium size antelope, hare, small mammals 

Behavior:

Adult females are solitary. Males solitary or in small coalitions with related individuals

Teaching Facts:

1. Scent marking is most important form of communication.

2. Cheetahs flourish when lions are removed from the area because lions steal prey and eat cheetah young. 

3. Fastest land mammal- can run over 60 miles per hour.

Meet Our Cheetahs:

Binder Park Zoo is home to three cheetah sisters: Katie, Madison, and Mohini. They arrived here in 2015 at two years of age, from their place of birth, The National Zoo. The cheetah is the world’s fastest land mammal, reaching speeds of 60 MPH. Our cheetahs at Binder Park Zoo like to display this behavior when stalking addax on the neighboring savanna exhibit. The trio run onto exhibit every morning to watch intently as the savanna animals make their way onto exhibit. Their favorite day of the week is Sunday when they receive bones. Our cheetahs, along with all our carnivores, eat a special meat diet formulated especially for zoo carnivores. One of their favorite places to nap is on the shady upper slope of the exhibit, so be sure to look up when you visit.