Mammals - Africaraw

Etosha National Park

Cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus drinking at 13th waterhole,along the dry Auob river bed, Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, South Africa. Note on the cheetah on your right that the radio collar, of the Gus and Margaret Mills research project ,is just visible.
Biology Note:- They are the worlds fastest land animal & this requires specialized anatomy. They have a light weight aerodynamically efficient body with a small skull & long legs. The small skull has large nostrils & sinuses to help alleviate oxygen debt during chases. Thus the skull can only support small masseter muscles & have short root canals for the canines. Thus the cheetah has rreltively weak jaws & cannot defend itself or its kill from other larger predators e.g.lion, hyena, & leopard. (See Caro TM. Cheetahs of the Serengeti Plains. Univ Chicago Press 1994).

13th waterholeAuob riverCheetah Acinonyx jubatusKgalagadi transfrontier parkSouth Africadrinking