PM releases big cats; radio-collared cheetahs being monitored 24/7

PM releases big cats; radio-collared cheetahs being monitored 24/7

  • Eight cheetahs from Namibia landed in India on Saturday (September 17) as part of the programme to reintroduce the feline in India seven decades after it was declared extinct in the country.
  • A special cargo flight carrying eight cheetahs from Namibia landed at Gwalior airbase in Madhya Pradesh on Saturday morning
  • The modified Boeing aircraft which took off from the African country Friday night, carried the cheetahs in special wooden crates during the around 10-hour journey.

  • A viral video showed the crates carrying the cheetahs stacked in what was earlier the economy section of the Boeing aircraft.
  • The plane landed at the Gwalior airbase shortly before 8 am.
  • After the plane landed at Gwalior, the ground personnel were seen helping transfer the crates, marked Live Animals, to the waiting choppers.
  • The felines were then flown in two Air Force helicopters to Palpur near the Park.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is celebrating his birthday, released three cheetahs in quarantine enclosures of the Kuno National Park in Madhya Pradesh at around 11.30 am.

  • The cheetahs remained without food during their air and road journey and they will be given something to eat once they are released from the enclosures.
  • The cheetahs have been strapped with radio collars, and will be monitored by a satellite. A dedicated monitoring team is tracking each cheetah 24/7.

  • The eight cheetahs, five females and three males, are being brought from Namibia as part of ‘Project Cheetah’, the world’s first inter-continental large wild carnivore translocation project.
  • The last cheetah died in the country in 1947 in Korea district in present-day Chhattisgarh which was earlier part of Madhya Pradesh, and the species was declared extinct from India in 1952.
  • The ‘African Cheetah Introduction Project in India’ was conceived in 2009. A plan to introduce the big cat in the KNP by November last year was delayed due to the COVID pandemic.
  • KNP is situated on the Northern side of Vidhyachal mountains and is spread across 344.686 sq km.
  • It has been named after a tributary of the Chambal River, Kuno

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