I've always known that we'd never save the cheetah without addressing the real needs of the human communities that live alongside it. It's now becoming clear that the same tactics that we've been using to save cheetahs might also possibly save the world.
Cheetah moms raising cubs in the wild already have it tough -- human wildlife conflict and habitat loss have already decimated the cheetah population by 90 percent in the last 100 years. The Schoemans and their "Cheetah House" have just made it tougher.
International Cheetah Day is a celebration of the magnificence of the cheetah. (Really, is there anything more awe-inspiring than watching a cheetah sprint across the grasslands, every muscle of its body a perfect expression of speed and grace?) It is also an opportunity to take action.
We began another beautiful morning at Mala Mala searching for lions that had been calling at dawn across the river from the Main Camp. Soon we got a radio call that Keith (the Main Camp Manager) had just sighted a leopard and cub from the camp's deck. We turned and headed to the edge of the river.
The purpose of the Clinton Global Initiative is to help commitment makers like myself connect with potential partners and resources to make these big ideas into reality. Our goal is to create large landscapes that are healthy places for people, livestock and predators and prey.
With loss of habitat and threats from humans, the cheetah is running its most important race -- the race for survival in the wild. Cheetahs are an endangered species whose population has plummeted by 90 percent in the last century.
If the cheetah loses its race for survival, the American Prong-horn Antelope will become the fastest land mammal, and all those textbooks naming the cheetah as the fastest land animal will need to be changed.