De Weldt Cheetah Park

Hartbeespoort Travel Blog

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Today was a drive back to theHartbeespoort Dam area to my reservation at the Cheetah Park. I arrived about 8:10 AM and had to wait a little bit fr the other person going on the tour to arrive but was not a wasted bit of time. Spent that time hanging out with a cheetah named Byron.  He was in the pen next to the converence center and I was talking to him and he was purring back at me!

Spent 4.5 hours at this park spenting time with the tour guide and the animals. What an incredible experience it was to find this place and be able to share in the experience of the work they are doing.  This is a rehabilitation facility and captive breeding/release facility. Eventually all of the cubs born there will be released to the wild.  Some interesting facts about cheetah is that they hve claws like dogs (nails to not retract like  cat) and they have very weak jaws.  They are very fragile animals with a 60% mortality rate amongst their new borns. Not very good odds when it comes to survival of the next generation.  There are also two different kinds of cheetah... the stanard cheetah that we see in programs and movies.... and the King Cheetah which marked completely different and is very rare (estimates of only 1000 left in the world).

Got the tour of the entire faclity via jeep... cheetach, wild dogs, and numerous kinds of vulures. It was a great tour and wonderful expereince... wish there was a way I could have stayed and helped them out.

The afternoon was spent at the Lion Park again taking more pictures. Discovered part of my picture issue as taking the photos through the tinted car window glass. But, did get some new pics that I am very pleased with.

Anyway... another day down and a few left before I return to the states. Going to probably be a quiet day at the hotel tomorrow. Getting tired of running around. Need to unwind a bit.
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14,488 km (9,002 miles) traveled
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