The East African: Pet cheetah trade threatens entire population


Cheetah cubs confiscated in Somaliland. The cub on the bottom had just died due to inadequate care. The other two were eventually transferred to a sanctuary in Ethiopia. PHOTO | GUNTHER WIRTH

A phone call from a US Marine in November 2005 set Patricia Tricorache, assistant director for strategic communications of the Namibia-based Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF), on the path to fighting the illegal wildlife trade.

“He was calling from Ethiopia about two cheetah cubs that were tied with ropes outside a restaurant in Gode, a remote village in eastern Ethiopia. He was a vet and said that the cubs would die soon; he was considering buying them.

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