These two cheetahs were released into the main reserve in mid-November last year. Every morning and every evening we go out to track these two to make sure they are all right and adapting to life as a free cheetah.
The female is the one we usually spend most of our time with during tracking since she has hot spots all over the reserve. In the wild, female cheetahs are solitary, and this statement is confirmed by how well she has adapted. But don't think she only hunts easy targets; she has caught duikers, springbok and lechwes. She has been hurt hunting, but had no trouble recovering and taking care of the wounds herself. The most amazing thing about this wild cheetah is how her trust in us has been built, since she has been released.
Male cheetahs form coalitions, often consisting of brothers. The male has been released without any other males for now, to first estimate how much they hunt and whether or not they will cope in the reserve. Early mornings he can be spotted next to the fence talking to his brothers and former coalition. Being alone in the reserve, however, does not impair his hunting abilities. He often brings duikers and lechwes down for a healthy meal.
We have only 14 cheetahs and one reserve trying to make a difference, but a little bit everywhere helps. And who knows? Maybe one day we could have been the ones to help save this majestic cat.