Cheetah Cubs Symbolize Years of Collaboration
CINCINNATI – The Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden is excited to announce the birth of three cheetah cubs, born and bred locally at the Cincinnati Zoo’s regional cheetah breeding facility (Mast Farm), in Clermont County, Ohio. The Zoo’s breeding facility is one of only four similar facilities in the United States managed by the Species Survival Plan (SSP). In the last two years, three out of only eight cheetah cub litters born in North America were born in Cincinnati. The cubs were the result of years of collaboration and effort between the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden, the Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF) in Namibia, Africa, the Columbus Zoo and the De Wildt Cheetah & Wildlife Trust in South Africa.
The cubs were born to the Columbus Zoo’s female “Purdy” and the Cincinnati Zoo’s male, “Wild Boy.” All male, two of the cubs will live at the Columbus Zoo while one will remain at the Cincinnati Zoo to join the Zoo’s Cat Ambassador Program.
“The birth of this cub is an opportunity for the Cincinnati Zoo to engage its visitors and families while following this important cub through its growth and training,” said Cathryn Hilker, Founder of the Cincinnati Zoo’s Cat Ambassador Program. “Our new blog, www.CheetahDays.com, will welcome visitors into the daily life of this young cat.”
“Purdy” was born in April 2000 at the De Wildt Cheetah & Wildlife Trust in South Africa. She has been at Cincinnati Zoo’s Mast Farm since October 2002. “Wild Boy” was wild-caught in June 1999 in Namibia. The death of his mother left him alone in the wild as a young cub. The CCF team was able to rescue “Wild Boy” and raised him for nearly two years. Without the effort of CCF, “Wild Boy” would not have survived. The Cincinnati Zoo was given four cheetahs in 2001 as a gift from the president of Namibia. “Wild Boy” was one of the four and has been at the Mast Farm since October 2001. Together, “Purdy” and “Wild Boy” have produced three litters, resulting in nine cubs.
This cub, Tommy T., named after the Head Keeper at the Cincinnati Zoo’s Mast Farm, is living in the Cincinnati Zoo’s Children’s Zoo Nursery and will remain in the nursery throughout the PNC Festival of Lights for the enjoyment of our visitors. After the event is over, the cub will join the Zoo’s Cat Ambassador Program, where he will become another great ambassador for the species and a symbol of the power of collaboration.