News Busch Gardens Tampa Welcomes Baby Cheetah Cubs

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Nov 18, 2013
Naples, FL
BGT Welcomes Cheetah Cubs Thabo & Tendai

On November 22, 2014, BGT welcomed two precious baby cheetah cubs to their existing coalition! Now aged at three month old, their names, which were given by the Busch Gardens animal care team, are Tendai, meaning “thankful,” and Thabo, meaning “joy.”

For the time being, guests will be able to see the cheetah cubs in The Edge Of Africa in the habitat opposite the meerkats. As time progresses, guests will be able to see the cheetahs behind the scenes at the Animal Care Center, Jambo Junction, and eventually on the Cheetah Run habitat with the remaining cheetah coalition.



Aug 23, 2013
Baby Cheetahs playing!!!!!!

So while we were at BGT earlier this month, they were starting to let the baby cheetahs out for 1hr per day. The cubs are about 4 months old in the pics and videos.  They have set up a new exhibit for this near the meerkats in the Edge of Africa. The keepers come out with the babies in large plastic portable dog kennels.  They have enrichment through different kinds of toys. I saw a big ball and the were playing with a stick toy similar to one you would play with you own cat. Ok it was a plastic water bottle on long flexible stick cause these babies would tear up a real cat toy! Check out the videos to see the baby cheetahs chasing the toy! While they still are cute and look small, the are the size of medium size dog now.

While talking with the keeper, the two cubs were from two mothers that each had 4 cubs. To help the mothers, two of the cubs were raised by hand to reduce the stress and burden that raising 4 cubs would have had on them. These cubs were raised by hand and kept under 24 hour care. At first the keepers stayed over night with the cheetahs but when they got a bit older and were sleeping through most of the night, the keepers started to take them home with them! They would transport the cubs in plastic dog kennels/crates. Since they were in quarantine and could not come into contact with house cats, they stayed isolated rooms in keepers' houses that had no other felines to protect them from viruses and the like. Three keepers fit the bill and the would rotate who got to take them home. The rooms were sanitized and the keepers scrubbed and put on surgery gowns before entering the room. The would play with the cheetahs before bed and in the morning and then bring the cubs back to the park.

According to Inside Busch Gardens Blog, The cubs were born on Nov. 22, 2014 and weigh approximately 12 pounds. Their names, which were given by the Busch Gardens animal care team, are Tendai, meaning “thankful,” and Thabo, meaning “joy.”  “Tendai has the tendency to be the first one to explore new things and areas and is more curious than his brother,” she says, “Thabo is more watchful from a distance and then jumps in once he sees that Tendai is having fun.” Once the cubs are old enough, they will start their own coalition as part of Cheetah Run, the innovative cheetah habitat that opened alongside Busch Gardens’ triple-launch coaster, Cheetah Hunt, in 2011. Until then, guests can see the cubs at various times throughout the day in the Edge of Africa area of the park, or by taking an Animal Care Center Behind The Scenes tour.

Baby Cheetah Pics!!!!!!

Baby Cheetah Videos!!!!!!



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