Otjitotongwe Cheetah Farm
Kamanjab Area - Namibia
Otjitotongwe Cheetah Farm is situated in north-eastern Namibia, 24kms east of Kamanjab on the north side of the road. It is home to a non-profit organization, aimed at conserving cheetahs in a natural environment. The 7,000ha farm, has both tame and wild cheetahs, many bought from farmers to prevent them from being killed.
The restaurant and bar are in the main thatched building. It has an all day tea and coffee station. Relax on the lawn by the swimming pool.
There are 5 double bungalows and 2 family rooms. 1 of the family rooms has a double bed. Each has its own en-suite toilet, shower and private verandah.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner are all served as a set buffet. There is no mains electricity supply on this farm.
The cheetah originally occupied most of Africa except for the equatorial forest and the true desert, (Sahara & Namib) as well as much of the Middle East and India, where it became extinct in the early 1950's. It is now extremely rare in the rest of Asia and Africa, north of the equator.
It is estimated that there are less than 7,500 cheetah left in the world, and about 6,000 of these are found in Southern Africa. According to a 1970 study, the numbers of cheetah in Namibia had improved, due apparently to the removal of lion and hyena, by farmers. In some cases, it was because of the re-introduction of various antelope species, favoured by these fleet-footed cats.
More recent surveys have shown that Namibia has 2000-2500 cheetah, of which 95% are on private (game of cattle) farms. Unfortunately, some farmers have continued to shoot cheetah because of their tendency to raid stock, particularly where their natural prey species are scarce, or absent. Whilst the current figures do not make the cheetah endangered in the absolute sense of the word, the extraordinary degree of genetic uniformity that these cats have been shown to exhibit, raises the possibility that a disease could devastate wild populations. Otjitotongwe is dedicated to the preservation of the cheetah species.
The farm offers superb photographic opportunities at scheduled cheetah feedings, and also offers guided game drives to view wild cheetah. There are also a number of unguided nature walks.
- Cheetah feeding
- There are planned feeding times on the farm, providing superb photographic opportunities.
- Guided game drives
- Sighting cheetah can be difficult as they often head for bushes and grass for cover. Their whistling or bird-like chirp is totally different from other cats though. Both tame and wild cheetah can be found here.
- Nature walks
- Apart from the flora and fauna found in the surrounding environment there are a couple of rather unusual sights worth a visit. Python vine (Fokea multiflora) is a shrub or small tree that often twines and strangles other trees. Stromatolites are fossils algae, believed to be between 600 and 700 million years old. They grew in the warm, shallow sea that once covered northern regions of the country, providing ancient records of life on earth.
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