Friday, 1 May 2015


24 April 2015

Three young cheetah arrived this month at Born Free Foundation’s Wildlife Rescue Centre in Ethiopia following a dramatic rescue mission pulled together by Born Free Ethiopia and partners at the Ethiopian Wildlife Conservation Authority (EWCA).

Originally confiscated from illegal trade as cubs in the remote reaches of Somaliland, the three females were placed with Guenther Wirth of NGO German Agro Action. Over the years Guenther has taken charge of many confiscated animals in Somaliland, returning them to health prior to their relocation to Ensessakotteh, Born Free's Rescue Centre west of Addis Ababa.

Born Free Ethiopia’s new Country Representative, Dr Zelealem Tefera, who helped organise their hand over at the Ethiopia-Somaliland border explained ‘The illegal trade in cheetah is nothing short of alarming. East Africa is being stripped of their fragile population to line the traders’ pockets and supply the irrational demand for exotic pets in the Middle East. This is illegal, unsustainable and cruel. It has to stop’.

The cheetah cubs are snatched at a very young age from the wild. Up to 70% of these cubs are found dead during confiscations; with recruitment to the wild population being virtually obliterated; this can ultimately only result in the eventual extinction of cheetah from the Horn of Africa.

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