Big Move for Cheetah Experience!!

by ZA Cheetah Conservation
Big Move for Cheetah Experience!!
Big Move for Cheetah Experience!!
Big Move for Cheetah Experience!!
Big Move for Cheetah Experience!!
Big Move for Cheetah Experience!!
Big Move for Cheetah Experience!!
Big Move for Cheetah Experience!!
Big Move for Cheetah Experience!!
Big Move for Cheetah Experience!!
Big Move for Cheetah Experience!!
Volunteer Village Kitchen in progress
Volunteer Village Kitchen in progress

As it has been over a year now since we moved, a lot has changed since we arrived in Bela Bela and many things are still changing every day. The camps were built, houses were built, we got a meatroom and volunteer room,... One thing that is still a big project in progress is our volunteer village. When we purchased the farm, the buildings were already there, all we need to do now is shape the setting into something that works for volunteers. We have to build a kitchen and a lounge, finish the bathrooms, install the water system and fix the electricity. It speaks for itself that this is an expensive project. We've received a lot of donations so far but are still in need of a lot of funds to finish our much needed volunteer village.

Another big project that has been taking up a lot of our time, is clearing our firelines. Winter in South Africa is fireseason and since we now live in the bush, we are taking every possible precaution against fires. Our staff has been busy cutting grass, trimming trees and poisioning weeds to make sure we have a proper safety line to keep our animals safe in case of a fire. 

Recently we also had to sedate the tiger, Fushan, because he had broken a tooth. Fushan went to the vet in Pretoria and received the best care! Your donations were also used to finance Fushans' vet care and we can't thank you enough for this!

 

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Freshly cut Firelines
Freshly cut Firelines
Fushan the tiger getting his teeth fixed
Fushan the tiger getting his teeth fixed

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Blaze in his new enclosure!
Blaze in his new enclosure!

In our last update, we informed you that we were busy building an enclosure for Blaze and Shailoh, our rescue mountain lion and leopard. We are proud to announce that we have finished the construction and were able to move Blaze and Shailoh into their forever home. Blaze immediately went to explore and had the best time sniffing around. Shailoh had less confidence and hid for the first couple of days as the big enclosure was very overwhelming to her. After a week, both of them gained a lot of confidence and were finally completely comfortable in their new camp. After spending the first 7 years of their lives in a 100 square enclosure, Blaze and Shailoh barely know what to do with all the space they have in their 3000 square meter enclosure.

 

More good news from our side is that our caracals Maxy and Sasha also moved into their newly built enclosure. Maxy was living in someone's house as a pet before he was surrendered to Cheetah Experience as he got too big and too destructive to live in the house. Sasha was rejected by her mum and therefore rescued by us. She was initally living with a serval she grew up with but their friendship unfortunately broke down. Maxy and Sasha were introduced to eachother and immediately got along really well. They lived in a temporary enclosure for a while until we finally finished their new home. When we moved them, they were full of confidence and didn't hesitate to go and meet their new neighbours. They have settled in completely now and are loving their enclosure every day.

 

We also have some good news regarding our tiger Fushan. After months and months of struggling to fill up his pool, we finally managed to install a new system which now allows us to fill up Fushan's pool straight from our tanks, which means that we don't have to get water delivered in a truck anymore. Fushan loves his pool and spends hours and hours sitting in the water looking at everything that's going on around him. 

 

Since our move, we have been very busy with building new connections in the area but this is unfortunately a long process. Because our name isn't fully out there yet, our meat supply is rather limited. This means that we have to purchase meat and prices in Limpopo are through the roof. Your donations have helped us to buy food for the animals and once again, we can't thank you enough. 

 

All of this wouldn't have been possible without your help so from the entire team at Cheetah Experience, we would like to say a big thank you to everyone who donated. No words can describe how grateful we are for your help.

Shailoh loves her new home!
Shailoh loves her new home!
Maxy and Sasha moved into their new enclosure!
Maxy and Sasha moved into their new enclosure!
Fushan in his pool!
Fushan in his pool!

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Our new volunteer room!
Our new volunteer room!

Thanks to Your help and support, we are happy to announce that our volunteer room has been built. Now that summer is almost here, it is really nice to have a place where the volunteers can just chill for a little bit and have a break during the day. We also start our days at the volunteer room with the staff meting then the volunteer meeting. The volunter room has everything the volunteers need: coffee, tea & sugar for the mornings, a fridge where they can keep their drinks cold during the day and lockers where they can keep their bags safe.

However, we are still busy with building the lion house and an enclosure for our new family members: Blaze and Shailoh. At the begining of September we were very busy organising an emergency re-homing of Blaze and Shailoh. Due to circumstances out of the facilities control, the animals lives were at risk from outside factors in their current home. The facility had to make the difficult decision to close their doors and safely relocate their animals. Shailoh the cape leopard and Blaze the mountain lion have lived together since they were cubs and the two best friends will remain together.

Blaze and Shailoh were in a smaller temporary area awaiting the building of their permanant enclosure. We had been waiting for them to settle in, gain confidence, feel secure and safe before swapping areas with Cosmo. Moving the cats around allows for them to experience new smells and sights, it is a great form of enrichment. Now that they have settled in, we hve a chance to swap them in every few days. Shailoh and Blaze have lots of trees to climb and explore, while Cosmo has the chance to read the scent markings and get to know his neighbours better!

Their new enclosure has been costed up and we will need to raise R200,000, unfortunately the cost of materials increased due to covid, so things are more expensive now. We are currently fundraising to build Blaze and Shailoh their own permanant enclosure, our fundraiser currently stands at just over R82,000.00! This is incredible and means that we can already begin to purchase materials and start the building process. But we are still in need for funds to be able to finish building their new forever home. We would be grateful if you could share our fundraiser link with your friends and family, every small donation counts!

At last but not at least, we wouldlike to say a BIG THANK YOU for your continous support, we can not express enough how much we appriciate it. Without YOU, we wouldn't be able to do so many thing for our animals. 

Volunteer meeting in the morning
Volunteer meeting in the morning
Handsome Blaze
Handsome Blaze
Beautiful Shailoh
Beautiful Shailoh
Blaze and Shailoh's camp had begun!
Blaze and Shailoh's camp had begun!

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Our lapa is being built!
Our lapa is being built!

We are happy to announce that all of our animals have finally been moved and we can now call Bela-Bela our new home. The animals have all settled in really well and are loving their new, natural enclosures. 

However, we are still not completely there yet. There are still a lot of things to be finished and constructions to be built. Currently we are busy building our desperately needed lapa and volunteer room, as well as the lion house - for our volunteers to have sleepovers and hear the lions roar at night. Another problem we have faced over the past weeks, is a water shortage as we depend on our boreholes for our water supply and since winter is our dry season, we are in desperate need of more water tanks and pumps. This is only a very small part of the long road we still have ahead. 

Once again, we would like to thank every single one of you for your donation. Without your support, we wouldn't have been able to do this. Seeing the animals in their new enclosures makes it all very worth it and it is thanks to you that we have achieved this.  

The progress on the lion house!
The progress on the lion house!
Our serval Lyra loves her new enclosure!
Our serval Lyra loves her new enclosure!
Caracal Diago enjoying his new home!
Caracal Diago enjoying his new home!
Our lion boys!
Our lion boys!
Cheetah Kenji enjoying the sun!
Cheetah Kenji enjoying the sun!

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Fushan in his new home!
Fushan in his new home!

While we are still moving our animals from Bloemfontein to Bela-Bela, we are proud to let you know that we can see the end to all the moving! The team at Cheetah Experience has been very busy building and finishing enclosures and on the 9th of Febuary we were finally able to move the lions and tiger to their new home. The leopards were next on the 25th of February and now there are only the small cats left to move. 

The animals have all settled in really well and are very happy in their new enclosures. However, we are not done yet! There are still a lot of things left to build and a lot of funds needed. We will have to build a lapa and volunteer room to accomodate the volunteers up at the camps, our perimeter fence needs to be finished, the volunteer accomodation needs to be finalised, and many other things! 

We would like to say a big thank you to everyone who has donated so far. Seeing the animals in their new enclosures makes it all very worth it and we could not have done this without your support. From the bottom of our hearts, we would like to thank every sinlge one of you! 

Our leopards love their new home!
Our leopards love their new home!
Our lions in Bela-Bela!
Our lions in Bela-Bela!
Gemini enjoying her new house!
Gemini enjoying her new house!

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Organization Information

ZA Cheetah Conservation

Location: Bloemfontein - South Africa
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @cheetahexp
Project Leader:
Riana van Nieuwenhuizen
Bela Bela, Limpopo South Africa
$76,449 raised of $900,000 goal
 
532 donations
$823,551 to go
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