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Video of A Cheetah Giving Birth to Four Cubs

cheetah birth

Image credit: Africam.com.

As early as in 1900, there were more than 100,000 cheetahs living in Africa and some parts of Asia, but now the figure has cut down to nearly 10,000 all over the world. The main reason for such decrease is habitat destruction and poaching, which is the continuous threat to today’s cats.

Although wild cheetahs are regarded to be more active in their reproduction than most big cats, their breeding is now becoming very difficult owing to significantly reduced genetic diversity and social habits. As the breeding is controlled in a careful way, cheetahs intend to be familiar the pressure, thus turning too stressed to mate.

It is very exciting to see the successful breeding does take place. Not long ago, the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre in South Africa was really pleased to observe that Meg, a female cheetah, gave birth to four cubs, each of whom had a copy of the king cheetah gene variant.

With the unique fur pattern, king cheetahs are rare to be seen in particular. It was previously thought that they were a hybrid of cheetahs and leopards, however, from the genetic analysis; it is the mutation that is attributed to variation in coloring.

Meg itself is not a king cheetah, but its father is, thus passing along one copy of that gene variant to the cubs. It is hoped that such cubs could produce king cheetah cubs if their future mates are king cheetahs or their potential mates also have one copy of the gene variant.

The entire birthing process of these four cubs lasted several hours and you are lucky now to watch the edited video here.

At present, the staff of the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre is carefully avoiding the interference with the mother and her cubs so as to make sure that they would maintain their natural bond as much as possible. If you are interested in it, you could observe them closely on the 24-hour live webcast.

Source: Huffpost Science

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