Posted on 31st May 2019 by Media Relations
On Thursday 6 June the Zoo’s six Cheetah cubs turn one! The cubs have been growing quickly and becoming more and more independent. They still like to be in close proximity to each other and are always seen together on exhibit.
Kyan has been a super mum over the past year. She certainly had a big job looking after so many cubs! Kyan is relaxing more as the cubs get older, allowing them to stray farther from her side to explore on their own.
“The cubs’ appetite for food is increasing and they now eat 1.4 kilograms of meat daily. This is a mixture of kangaroo, rabbit and chicken. They aren’t fussy and devour everything they get,” said Cheetah Keeper, Jordan Michelmore.
Generally, the cubs have been fit and healthy in their first year however in December last year one of the male cubs, Radi broke his leg.
“Radi had specialist orthopaedic surgery which was successful but the recovery has been a long process. Radi has been spending time with his brothers every day and will eventually re-join them,” said Jordan.
Generally cubs will stay with their mum until they are 15 – 18 months old. Brothers will live in life long coalitions, whereas females are typically solitary.
“At this stage our males Denzel and Bomani will fully integrate with Radi and the female cubs will stay together for a period as well, but eventually the females will become solitary, only coming together with another cheetah to breed.”
“The cubs will be considered to be fully grown at around two years of age, when they will be able to join the breeding program.”
The Cheetah cubs may stay here in Dubbo to be paired with some of the Zoo’s Cheetah, of which there are now 18. Alternatively they may be transferred to another Zoo to join the regional breeding program.
“The Cheetah cubs are quite active in the morning and like to play and stalk each other but generally rest in the middle part of the day,” said Jordan.
A great time to see the Cheetah cubs is at the daily keeper talk at 11:35am. Keepers feed the group at this time so it is a great way to see them and also learn about the species.