The Cheetah

I’m back! Here’s a treat for you, potentially the most exciting thing I saw on my trip (see if you can guess where)…

Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
Possibly my favorite photo because of his expression, even though his eyes are closed.

So the story of this cheetah is that I was working with a PhD student whose project was to study the foraging behavior of elephants. She had to follow elephants and watch everything thing they eat for an hour, then take samples to study their nutritional content. This involved a lot of driving around the bush like a mad woman chasing elephants.

One day we were chasing an elephant and I shouted, “WHOA! Hit the brakes!”

She slammed on the brakes and I hit the front of the car (as I was standing up through the roof as one does when driving around the African bush). “There’s a giant cat in front of the car!” At the time, in my excitement, I couldn’t figure out whether it was a leopard or a cheetah.

She turned off the engine and stood up through the roof and shouted, “Where!?”

“Right in front of the car!” I shouted.

“Where!?”

“Right in front of the car!”

“Where!?”

“LITERALLY RIGHT IN FRONT OF THE CAR!” and I pointed 10 meters in front of the hood where a cheetah was lazily lounging on the ground.

Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
He glanced at us but did not seem to mind our presence at all.
Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
And looked majestic
Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
Occasionally, he looked around at Impala and we hoped he would chase one
Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
He even sat up at one point, but he did not chase them.
Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
Close up
Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
He gave us so much time to photograph him that I also decided to photograph his amazing feet.
Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
Eventually, he lazily got up and walked away slowly (look at how skinny he is!!)
Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
I like this one where he’s looking up at the sky
Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
As he walked away, he checked under every bush for some reason (maybe looking for a snack)
Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
What a glorious animal!

I hope you enjoy him as much as I did!

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17 thoughts on “The Cheetah

  1. Pingback: A bunch of big, fat cheetahs | standingoutinmyfield

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