Turn Your Work Into A Life-line For Cheetah’s

by Inga Yandell

International Cheetah Day

We all have passions that extend beyond our work, but often reserve them for the weekends (i.e. weekend warriors who pursue their love of sport outside office hours).

Now, you have the chance to support a cause on the clock!

To celebrate International Cheetah day on 4 December 2014, Cheetah Conservation Fund Australia (CCFA) is encouraging Australians to donate one hour’s pay to help in saving the cheetah from extinction.

Most people know that the cheetah is the fastest land mammal, accelerating from zero to 96 kilometres an hour in only three seconds—faster than a sports car—to reach speeds of 120 kilometres per hour. Its stride can cover 6.7 metres, and its long flat-ended tail acts as a rudder to aid in rapid direction changes. Unfortunately for the cheetah, it is a sprinter, not a long-distance runner, and its frame is light. Hence, prey with better endurance can often escape, and when the cheetah does catch its dinner, it cannot defend it against more robust scavengers, so, although a formidable predator to outrun, it has to work hard to earn a living.

However, what most people don’t know is that the cheetah is racing towards extinction—in fact, it is the most endangered of all the African big cats. In 1990, it is estimated that more than 100,000 cheetahs roamed throughout Africa and Asia. Today, less than 10,000 animals remain, sparsely distributed across a few countries. As to the Asiatic cheetah, it is virtually instinct, with less than 100 left in Iran. This decrease has been brought about by hunting and trapping, encroachment on habitat, disappearance of prey species, poaching for the illegal pet trade and vulnerability to other predators. The cheetah’s survival depends on our ability to manage the wild population and protect its habitat.

The Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF) has been working tirelessly for more than three decades to preserve the cheetah through education and the propagation of sound environmental and farming practices. Founded in 1990 by Dr Laurie Marker, the CCF uses a multi-pronged approach to protect and promote cheetahs. Its Namibian headquarters act as a rescue, rehabilitation and, where possible, release centre for individual cheetahs in need. It is also an education and international research centre. One of its core programs is the Livestock Guarding Dog Program, which breeds and trains Anatolian Shepherd dogs to protect livestock from predators and reduce the number of cheetahs killed by farmers. Finally, the CCF also helps Namibian locals to develop sound and diverse farming practices and industries, while educating them on the economic benefits of maintaining a healthy cheetah population.

You can be a part of the preservation of this amazing animal and inspire others to help create a future for the cheetah.

If you’ve ever dreamed of working for wildlife or contributing to a cause greater than yourself this unique donation initiative is one way to achieve that goal—turning the work you do, into a life-line for cheetah’s.

Another great way to support the survival of the world’s fastest cat is by purchasing CCF’s 2015 calendar (ideal as christmas or new years gifts).

For more information please email info@cheetah.org.au, or go to www.cheetah.org.au.

CCF Australia

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Inga Yandell
Explorer and photo-journalist, passionate about nature, culture and travel. Combining science and conservation with investigative journalism to provide educational resources and a platform for science exploration.
Inga Yandell

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