A 15-year-old male Cheetah died on Sunday, 26 March, at the Nehru Zoological Park in Hyderabad due to a heart attack, zoo authorities said.
The Cheetah, named Abdullah, was gifted by one of the princes of Saudi Arabia more than a decade ago during his visit to the Zoo.
With Abdullah’s death, the Nehru Zoological Park is left with no cheetah now, the official said.
Meanwhile, eight cheetahs from Namibia were released in September into Madhya Pradesh’s Kuno national park by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as part of the programme to reintroduce the feline species in India.
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The death’s fallout
The post-mortem report of the cheetah said it died due to heart failure, an official told reporters.
He said samples for an investigation had been collected and a further report might come out within a week.
During his visit to the Zoo on the occasion of the COP 11 summit in 2012, which was held in Hyderabad, Saudi Prince Bandar bin Muhammad Al Saud — the son of one of the half brothers of the then monarch, King Abdulaziz — announced the gifting of two pairs of African lions and cheetahs.
The female cheetah who came as part of the pair died in 2020, and since then the male cheetah, Abdullah, was alone.
Hiba, the female Cheetah, died at the age of eight. She was diagnosed with paraplegia, a medical condition involving the impairment of the sensory function of the lower extremities. It is a classification of paralysis.
With Abdullah’s death, Nehru Zoological Park has no cheetah.
Cheetahs were declared extinct in India about 70 years ago, with the last one being killed by Maharajah Ramanuj Pratap Singh Deo in what is now modern-day Chhattisgarh.
(With PTI inputs)