Asiatic Cheetah

1. The mammal I chose to study is:

Acinonyx jubatus venaticus

2. The common name of my mammal is:

Asiatic Cheetah

3. The classification of my mammal:
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia

order: Carnivora

Family: Felidae
Genus: Acinonyx
Species: jubatus

4. What are some of the animal’s physical adaptations to its environment?
Its teeth are small compared to other big cats. The teeth are small because everything about the cheetah is designed to enhance its running speed. To run really fast they need lots of oxygen and to get it the cheetah needs very large nasal passages.

5. What are some of th e organism’s behavioral adaptations to its environment?
males rarely ever live alone
young males go as far from their parents as they can, sometimes up to 300 miles. they do this because they need to have their own hunting ground

6. What is the role of your organism in the food chain? Be specific about role as a producer, consumer or decomposer. If a consumer, then describe the food preferences, like herbivore, carnivore or omnivore.
The Asiatic cheetah is consumer and a carnivore it
eats a variety of small animals


7. Describe the biome where this organism lives.
the asiatic cheetah lives in a sparse subdesert stepe, the scrubland only recieve about
25-75 cm of rain every year. the stepe doesn't recieve enough water for trees to grow, so the main plant you see there is grass.
8. Discuss the status of the species. Is it plentiful, threatened, endangered or extinct?
The Asiatic Cheetah is endangered. There are only about 50 left!

9. How do humans impact your organism? (Hot Tip: Think of the HIPPO dilemma – handout)
The Asiatic cheetah has been afected by humans because humans have fragmented and destroyed their habitat and hunted their game (prey) to near extinction.

10. Identify the place(s) on the map where your organism lives. Color in the map accordingly.

11. Amazing facts:
The cheetah originated about 4,000,000 years ago, way before the other big cats.
all cheetah alive today appear to be as closely related as identical twins.
The top speed, 71 miles per hour (114 kilometers per hour), can usually be maintained for only 200-300 yards.

How the cheetah got its spots
By Matthew W.S.

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Many years a go long before humans lived, a cheetah, the first of its kind, walked among the grassy plains of a prairie. It was lean and muscular just like cheetahs today, but there was one difference, this cheetah didn’t have spots! The cheetah crept close to its prey. Not a branch cracked, not a leaf crackled. Then the cheetah leapt. It tackled the deer to the ground biting into its flesh.

The moon shown brightly that night, because it was the animal gathering. All the animals of the forest come to a clearing where the giant tree stood. They were all nervous because a new predator had come to the forest. It was fast as lightning and as hidden as a chameleon, now the mention of its name
frightened even the bravest animals. That is why the meeting had been called. The wise old owl started the discussion, by hooting for order.
Then the deer spoke, “The Dreaded One has been killing too many deer, but there is nothing we can do to stop it.”
“I know what we should do, we can work together to kill it!” said the rhinoceros, “I could stab it with my horn and then you could…”
“HOOOOT!” the owl screech cutting off the Rhino, “Don’t be silly Rhino, think not of senseless violence but a plan, for that is what we need!”
“But senseless violence is a plan” complained the Rhino, “First I would mash it, then you would bite it and then …”
“HOOT! HOOOT!” shrieked the owl, “Rhino this is not up for discussion!”
“But…” the Rhino dejectedly whined.

“But nothing!” squawked the owl i
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n a tone that cl
early stated that this was to be spoken of no more. “Well then, does anybody else have ideas?” No one answered, and the hallow where they gathering took place became as silent as an oak.
Then Field Mouse croaked, “I know what we need to do”. When the mouse said this, a chorus of laughter and snorting rose from the crowd. But then the mouse promptly said, “If you don’t want to hear what I have to say then don’t listen, I don’t care if The Dreaded One kills and eats you, I will still be safe in my mouse hole, hidden by branches and leaves where the Killer would never look, but if you want to be saved then listen to me!” After that the laughter quieted and the animals focused on the mouse and that is when the mouse spoke, “Once when I was by the watering hole I saw the Killer, he was stalking an antelope that was drinking, I thought the antelope would bound away faster than The Dreaded One ever could, but the antelope was oblivious to what was going on around it and that was when the Evil One struck, when the prey didn’t see it!
“Get to the point already we don’t have all night” snorted Elephant. The grumpy Elephant would have said more but then the owl hooted at it to be quiet.
Then the mouse started to talk again, “Well like I was saying the Evil One struck, when the prey didn’t see it, so I thought if we could see the Killer we would be able to escape before it was too late.”
The owl thought for a few moments before he spoke, “It is a good plan Mouse, a very good plan, but how do you suppose we would make the cheetah easier to see?”
The mouse thought for a moment before saying, “I was thinking of painting
Stripes on The Dreaded One, we could…”
“Not likely!” growled Tiger. I don’t want all of you running whenever I come near because you think I’m the Killer.”
“I have an idea!” exclaimed the owl. “We can paint spots on it!”

The crowd of animals all agreed that that was the best idea, so the animals set off to find the Juju berries to make the paint. Finally after many hours of searching they found the berries, but they were high up on a tree!
“How should we get them down?” asked the mouse
None of the animals answered, unsure of what to do.
Eventually a small sparrow sang, “I know I’ll fly up there and grab the berries!”
The sparrow began to flap his wing and soared up to the top of the tree.
The sparrow landed on the highest branch and snatched the berries. Then he flew back down.
The crowd of animals cheered as the sparrow reached the ground. Well all of them but them grumpy elephant, who scoffed “I could have done way better!”
“Now all we have to do is paint the Killer and we won’t be hunted again!” the mouse shouted joyously.
All the animals headed towards the Dreaded One’s den. The climbed the hill where the Killer’s den was, and then they entered the cave. The biggest animals, Hippo and Elephant held the cheetah down. Well the other animal began to paint spots.
Luckily to this day the paint hasn’t faded, and that it is why the dreaded cheetah has spots.

Of course, in reality cheetah have spots because it helps them be camouflaged!


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