Elisabeth Torres, Global Animal
Last week the birth of three healthy cheetah cubs was broadcasted live for the world to see on Africam.com. The cats are new additions to the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Center (HESC) and their lives will be documented on the Africam channel “A Cheetah Cub’s Tail.” The solar-powered camera in the habitat allows viewers at home to watch the interactions between the cheetah mother and her cubs 24/7 from birth to their re-introduction to the wild.
Paul Penhorn, a spokesperson for Africam, says, “As far as we know this has never been done before. The work being done for the cheetah at HESC is truly inspiring, and it’s a story we felt needed to be told.” Africam’s story truly has wildlife conservation at heart. In the last 100 years the cheetah population has decreased by approximately 90 percent. Breeding programs are now an essential part of ensuring the long-term survival of this incredible species. Hopefully the live cameras will bring awareness to the problems cheetah’s face, and promote further conservation by touching the hearts of their internet audiences.
As entertaining and heart warming as the broadcast is, it also proves very useful for the researchers at HESC. With the solar-powered camera they will be able to observe the interaction between mother and cubs uninterrupted by the presence of humans. Being able to capture, record, and document the behavior is going to provide invaluable information that will greatly aid in further conservation of the species.