Saturday, November 26, 2016

November 2016 Ann van Dyk Cheetah Centre - cheetahs

After we finished viewing the wild dogs we went to see a few male cheetahs. These are adolescents and important to note, not "ambassadors". There were fed behind the fence, but we were also able to see them inside the large fenced area. The animals have a lot of room to run and also trained in techniques that will allow them to survive when released into the wild. But release is selective as they are not released unless the area is safe for them to thrive - ie, not too many lions.

Here are a few pictures of these beautiful creatures. One interesting feature is that each cheetah has a unique tear line.

Sitting pretty and waiting for the jeep. Here is our first cheetah of the day.

 Look at the gorgeous tail.

 Nice teeth!

Chow time! They were fed in an enclosure. Much more safe for the visitors.

He was fun to watch. And quite handsome, too!

Guinea fowl in the field.

Feeding time. Workers go inside the enclosure to feed the cheetahs.

An opportunity to pet the ambassador cheetah. He is a special cheetah used for education purposes. He was really patient.

Baby cheetah on a poster. We did not see any little ones.


November 2016 Ann van Dyk Cheetah Centre - wild dogs

The visit to the Ann van Dyke Cheetah Centre was a very special experience. The Centre is located just a couple of hours north and west of Johannesburg, an easy ride for a weekend adventure. Cheetahs are near endangered and this farm breeds them and and works with parks for release. It is an incredible operation and I suggest anyone interested in preserving wildlife go to the website.

They also breed wild dogs and serve as a home for some injured birds. It was a great visit and I had the opportunity to pet a male cheetah. In a very careful environment, they have the ambassador cheetah (not all cheetahs are ambassadors) lie down on a table and one by one the visitors are allowed to pet his back. So cool. And he was so big!

Even though the cheetahs are absolutely beautiful animals, I think my favorites on the farm were the wild dogs. We were able to watch them drink at a waterhole and there were fed by the workers. We were able to watch both the cheetahs and dogs feed - they are well aware that when the jeeps come by food is to follow. I really enjoy watching animal behavior and this was a very special event.

Here are a few pictures of the beautiful animals and the Centre. (Separate post for cheetahs.)


Several vultures were at the Centre. They had been injured elsewhere and are brought here to love.

Vehicle to take visitors to few the animals.

African civet.

Wild dogs. They have unique color patterns. Look at those teeth in some of the pictures.

 Meal time.

This one was my favorite.