Cheetah Hunting in Namibia

Discussion in 'Hunting Africa' started by Ozondjahe Hunting Safaris, Apr 5, 2010.

  1. monish

    monish AH Elite

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    Few excerpts of the Cheetah training for hunting in India by the Royals. The Cheetah was trained by the keepers and trainers called Cheetah Mahasama who were in charge of Cheetah Khanas of the Maharajas / Nawabs and Ruling Chiefs.

    Cheetah Capturing & Training Procedure

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    Keepers and trainers called Cheetah Mahasama

    The male cheetahs generally were caught in the age group between 12 to 18 months, the young cubs and females were rarely caught. Capturing an active and a healthy male cheetah use to be a challenge for the trainer and his assistants. Cheetahs are quite dog like animals and tend to play and mark the territory range at a particular tree. The tree was located and a snare use to be set making a boar sinew noose around the tree or nearer to it , once snared and caught the animal is blind folded and leased by the soft rope by neck and around the loins and carried on a rope netted cot back to the village where the trainer & his family resided.

    The training schedule incepts firstly by tying down the animal by thick soft rope by neck, loins and both rear legs on the wooden cot for first 3 days and a thick hood made of soft leather was put on its head blinding him completely. The animal is starved and was not allowed to sleep by constant taunting & talking by female members with the captured animal of the trainers family as women folks voices soothens the tormented & starved cheetah and eventually the poor sleepless animal being in a piteous condition is abjectly tamed to submission.

    The hoods is not removed for all these 3 days, 4th day the cheetah is fed with few ounces of meat but not belly full and he is tied to the cot facing the open area around the keepers house , and the trainer makes rushes at him with a wet cloth again & again to instigate a charge in retaliation every day, the feed quantity is increased day by day twice for another 20 days and is taken for walks once every day during the training time, through the village bazaars and the animal is introduced to humans and the domesticated animals.

    After 20 days the animal was made to sleep in the trainers room on the same cot to develop a strong bond and trust which lasted for a life time.

    There was not much for the cheetah to be trained in the field, the instincts take over at the sight of the black buck when the hood was removed and it was released from the neck leash on from the cot with the loin rope on the animal which had a phsycological effect on the cheetah may be of the submission towards his trainer and the keeper.

    This is the way Cheetahs were trained for hunting in India, I could not more aptly translate the old hand written manuscript, which is worn out a lot and is hardly readable.

    Monish
     
  2. AfricaHunting.com

    AfricaHunting.com FOUNDER AH Ambassador

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    Monish, This is the information I was looking for, very interesting, I really appreciate you taking the time to translate the manuscript. Jerome
     
  3. monish

    monish AH Elite

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    I am delighted that you did appreciate the training schedule for Cheetahs in India. Hunting with falcons and hawks too was a very sort after sport by the Royalty in India.

    Thanks,

    Monish
     
  4. johndavid

    johndavid New Member

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    nice snap shot and the most important thing is it is very tough to have a natural pictures with leopard hunting.. its nice post with all the snap shots..thanks for the post
     
  5. Bapu

    Bapu New Member

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    The family who trained Cheetahs in Princely India in my area is still present here but it is a forgotten art now but yes you can meet them if you make a trip here. There was a market place in Punjab in North India during the Princely India where we went to buy Falcons, Cheetahs etc.

    I recommend a good book on Indian Cheetahs to read "End Of A Trail" by Divyabhanusinh. I hope you can find it if not let me know I shall help you find one.

    Bapu
     
  6. AfricaHunting.com

    AfricaHunting.com FOUNDER AH Ambassador

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    Bapu,
    Thanks for the insight and recommendation, it is much appreciated. By the way the book is easy to find.

    The End of Trail: The Cheetah in India

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    The End of Trail: The Cheetah in India (third edition)

    Preface to the Third edition
    At the dawn of the twentieth century, cheetahs existed on the Indian subcontinent, though admittedly few in numbers. The last credible sighting of these swift cats in India was in the winter of 1967-68. In Pakistan, the Animal has reportedly been sighted up to 1997 and possibly even later, as stray individual cheetahs may have crossed over from Iran.

    When this book was published in 1995, I had dared to hop that it would generate some interest within the government to reintroduce the cheetah in India. After all, the animal was reported sporadically on the subcontinent up to the time of the book's publication and beyond. Its memory, I had hoped, was still fresh enough for the powers that be, to see it back in its former habitat. As it happens, it turned out that my hope had been naive. The trail of the animal has indeed gone cold, barring the usual chatter within non- governmental circles about its reintroduction, and of all things, an attempt to clone a cheetah from Iran in India by a scientific institution funded by the government.

    It has been estimated that there were probably 25,000 tigers left at the beginning of the twentieth century 1 and right up to 1947, the year of India's independence, they were reported in substantial numbers. For example, 1074 tigers were officially shot in the United Provinces alone between 1929-28.2 Massive deforestation, a slackening of administrative efficiency with the disappearance of the Imperial power and the princely states, the easy availability of fireman licenses, new roads, and four-wheel drive vehicles spelt doom for wild animals. By the time the government of India woke up to the disaster, only 1827 tigers could be accounted for in 1972, which led to the launching of Project Tiger.

    The tiger's preferred habitat is thick jungle, just the sort of natural environment that would be destroyed or degraded last by human action. The depleted numbers of tigers are an indication of the state of the projected areas of the country. The great grasslands disappeared earlier. With them went the lion, which became extinct in India by the 1890s, except for the relict population in the Saurashtra peninsula where it still survives precariously. The cheetah soon followed; it was totally wiped out in the succeeding eighty years.

    However, the government initiative of project tiger brought some respite for the tiger. In spite of this, India is facing a second wildlife crisis for sometime now. The tiger and its habitat are under renewed threat for numerous reasons which have been well documented by several others. Suffice it for our purpose to say that the state has failed to adequately protect its last remaining forests and their fauna. The grasslands do not have any hope, under these circumstances, for survival in large areas, or for regeneration through sound management by the government. There is a lack of political will. With its habitat gone, there is no hope for the cheetah's reintroduction in our midst in a meaningful manner, that is, by recreating a healthy thriving population in the wild.

    The lion is Gujarat and the great one-horned rhinoceros in Assam survive because of willing administrations backed by local pride in these animals. The cheetah, on the other hand, has no champions. It is not even recognized by most people who confuse it with the leopard. Visions of a cheetah family resting in a glade or a cheetah running down a black buck in a grassland, are the stuff of romantic fiction.

    India today is a resurgent, vibrant nation. Our scientists want to be at the forefront of technological development and some of them want to learn and use the techniques for cloning, which is not surprising. The Center for Cellular and Molecular Biology at Hyderabad reportedly wanted to obtain a pair of cheetahs from Iran for the experiments; or failing which they wanted to collect fertilized eggs from a female there, in order to implant them into surrogate leopard females here. It appears India approached the Iranian President Mahammad khatami during his visit to the center in 2003.4 However, nothing came of it as the Iranians did not agree to part with any cheetahs from the miniscule numbers that survive there, and in any case, the only know cheetahs from Iran in captivity, a female, died at Pardisan Park, Tehran on 23 December 2004.5

    It is not necessary to use a specimen of a critically endangered species of animal to learn or perfect the process of cloning. An Indian 'Dolly' would have served the purpose just as well. If the intention was to regenerate this lost species in India, the priority surely would have been to identify one or more degraded grasslands, allow them to recover, ensure proper prey base and so on, so that such habitats could sustain a healthy wild population. Without such a plan in place, a successfully cloned cheetah would have languished in one of our zoos where the record of keeping them leaves much to be desired.

    The only hope for the survival of the cheetahs in Asia is in Iran. The government there is taking steps to project the cheetahs there, informed me that less than 60 animals survive, mostly on Iran's arid central plateau. But there is still hope. Towards the end of 2005, a camera trap photographed a female with four cubs aged six months, in the Dar-e Anjir Wildlife Refuge.6 The fact that the cubs survived, arguably the most difficult period of their life, indicates that there is sufficient cover and prey for them to make their last stand. Hopefully, they will succeed.

    Back of the Book
    This book presents a pictorial history of the cheetah in India from the pre-historic period to the present. It provides a comprehensive account of the animal's interaction with man through the ages, reconstructing its life in captivity and its use by Indian royalty as an aid to hunting. Divyabhanusingh examines the Indian cheetah's decline in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, charting its path to extinction and analyzing the causes of its disappearance, using evidence of declining numbers in Iran, and its existence in Afghanistan and Pakistan. In a new preface to this edition, he laments the lack of progress on the part of the government in successfully reintroducing the cheetah from Iran, citing examples of dwindling forest reserves, and declining numbers of tigers and lions in the wild in India. This superb book with its many illustrations, is an indispensable reference work that aims to renew interest in the cheetah's reintroduction in India.

    Divyabhanusingh, former Vice President of the Bombay Natural History Society, is a member of the Cat Specialist Group, Species Survival Commission of World Conservation Union, and trustee of World Wide Fund for Nature. He is an authority on the cheetah in India and the Asiatic lion.

    'In Divyabhanusingh…. The Indian cheetah, the little known and enigmatic species of the Indian plains has found a remarkably talented chronicler of its history'
    -J.C. Daniel, Journal, Bombay Natural History Society
    '…. An elegiac celebration and memorial, as well as a social history, gathering together evidence of contancts and relationship between man and animal …ultimately fatal to the latter. … an attractive and moving book.'
    -Simon Digby, Studies in History
    '… takes you through glimpses of Mughal India, British India and post- Independence India… This book is essential reading for all those interested in the natural history of the subcontinent. Meticulously researched… a remarkable eulogy to the cheetah in India.'
    - Valmik Thapar India Today

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    The author Dr. Divyabhanusinh Chavda

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    The End of Trail: The Cheetah in India (hard book)

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    The End of Trail: The Cheetah in India (paperback)
     
  7. monish

    monish AH Elite

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    Few more photos & sketches on cheetah coursing.

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    Monish
     
  8. AfricaHunting.com

    AfricaHunting.com FOUNDER AH Ambassador

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    Thanks Monish :thumb:.
     
  9. monish

    monish AH Elite

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    Glad you appreciate the photo & the sketches.

    Thanks

    Monish
     
  10. AfricaHunting.com

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  11. AfricaHunting.com

    AfricaHunting.com FOUNDER AH Ambassador

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    Hunting Deer with Trained Leopards

    Hunting Deer with Trained Leopards

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    Hunting Deer with Trained Leopards, 1872
     
  12. AfricaHunting.com

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    The World's Fastest Beast Trains for a Race in London

    The World's Fastest Beast Trains for a Race in London

    (click on image to enlarge to full view)
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    The World's Fastest Beast Trains for a Race in London, 1937
     
  13. monish

    monish AH Elite

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    Thanks for sharing wonderful information on cheetah hunting & race training.

    Monish
     
  14. monish

    monish AH Elite

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    Photograph of a group of three cheetahs with handlers at Baroda, Gujarat from the Curzon Collection, taken by an unknown photographer during the 1890s. Hunting with cheetahs was one of several royal sports traditionally favoured by Indian princes and continued during the 19th century. These animals belonged to the Gaekwar Sayaji Rao III (ruled 1875-1939), 12th Maharaja of Baroda.

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    Monish
     
  15. kurtvn

    kurtvn New Member

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    Cheetah to be reintroduced to India

    I know this will be of tangental interest to our Indian friends.

    best,
    kurtvn

    Cheetah will run again in India

    The cheetah, eradicated in India by hunting nearly a century ago, will run again in the country, as three sites are earmarked for its reintroduction.

    The government has approved wildlife groups' recommendations of two sanctuaries in Madhya Pradesh and an area in Rajasthan as potential homes.

    The government will spend 30m rupees ($0.6m; £0.4m) to restore these sites before the animals are imported.

    The plan is to import the cats from Africa, Iran and the Middle East. The vast majority of the 10,000 cheetahs left in the world are in Africa.

    Kuno Palpur and Nauradehi wildlife sanctuaries in the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh and Shahgarh area in Jaisalmer, in the northern state of Rajasthan, have been selected as the sites to house the animals.

    Trophy hunters
    Environment and Forests Minister Jairam Ramesh said the reintroduction of the world's fastest land animal would "restore the grasslands" of India.

    Wildlife experts say the two sanctuaries in Madhya Pradesh had the capacity to accommodate nearly 80 cheetahs, although 23 human settlements will have to be moved from the one in Nauradehi.

    Scores of nomadic human settlements would also have to be cleared at the site in Rajasthan on the international border with Pakistan.

    "The return of the cheetah would make India the only country in the world to host six of the world's eight large cats and the only one to have all the large cats of Asia," MK Ranjitsinh of Wildlife Trust of India told the Press Trust of India news agency.

    Pursued by trophy hunters and herdsmen to the brink of extinction during the Raj, the Asiatic cheetah vanished from India many decades ago.

    Conservationists say less than 100 of the critically endangered subspecies remain in Iran, roaming the central deserts.

    The vast majority of the 10,000 cheetahs left in the world are in Africa.

    Critics of the reintroduction scheme in India say that without restoring habitat and prey base, and reducing the scope for man-animal conflict, viable cheetah populations will not flourish.


    Source: BBC News South Asia
     
  16. monish

    monish AH Elite

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    Kurtvn,

    Yes , it would be great to see Cheetahs roaming the wilderness of this beautiful country all over again after nearly 60 years.

    Monish
     
  17. AfricaHunting.com

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    A Hunting Party of Hawks, Two Caracals and a Cheetah, 1920. The animals are quite used to each other's presence and appear to be able to live in close proximity when tame.

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  18. monish

    monish AH Elite

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    Beautiful Photos of the cheetahs. Thanks...

    Monish
     
  19. chemarq

    chemarq AH Senior Member

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    Very interesting and instructive
    Thanks for sharing !!!

    Jose
     
  20. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    Before reading the training technique, I would have guessed it would be along the line of falconry training. Blindfolds, controlled feeding and some type of stimulus deprivation. Creative people. I hope they are successfully reintroduced in India.
    Sounds like Jerome was about to give up on guns and starting a new hunting venture back home! Tell me when you get it arranged Jerome I'll come and see that, for sure.
     

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