29 Mar 2023

Madhya Pradesh: Female Cheetah 'Siyaya' Gives Birth To 4 Cubs In Kuno National Park

Sheopur: Wednesday, March 29, 2023 brought a big gift for the people of the state and the world of wildlife. A 3-year-old Namibian female cheetah ' Siyaya' released in Kuno National Park has given birth to four cheetah cubs. Forest Minister Dr. Kunwar Vijay Shah has expressed happiness over the birth of cheetah cubs.

Siyaya was among the eight cheetahs that were translocated to India on September 17 in 2022. The news is heartening for wildlife lovers as they were disappointed after the recent death of female cheeatah Sasha in Kuno.

Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Wildlife) Shri J.S. Chouhan told that for the last one week, Siyaya's activities were concentrated at one place in Enclosure No. 5. 

Cheetah expert Eli Walker saw cubs

This led to the realisation that possibly Siyaya was about to give birth to cubs. On Wednesday, when Siyaya went hunting, Namibian cheetah expert Eli Walker observed from a safe distance at the relevant site and found that the female cheetah had given birth to 4 cubs.

It is notable that among the male/female cheetahs released by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi in Kuno National Park on September 17, 2022, the Namibian female cheetah "Siyaya" has delivered cubs for the first time on the soil of the country. The cubs and Siyaya are completely healthy and active.

Cheetah cubs born after over 7 decades on soil of India

Cheetah cubs are born after over 7 decades on the soil of India as the last cheetah had become extinct in India in 1953. 

It is estimated the cubs were born on March 24 when the female cheetah went away from the remaining animals in the larger game-stocked enclosure at the park. Since cheetahs have a gestation period of around 90-95 days, the cubs were definitely conceived in India. 

Cheetah cubs open their eyes after three weeks. The gender-wise breakup of the cubs is not known as the park management has not been able to examine them closely but has managed to take a photo of the litter.

Birth proved that cheetahs are comfortable

V Jhala, former director and chief scientist of the cheetah project said the cheetahs mate only in a stress-free environment and the birth of four cubs proved that cheetahs are comfortable and adapted well here in Kuno National Park. They are themselves expanding the population of cheetahs, he said.

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