(Translated by WCHV)
Asiatic Cheetah or Persian Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus venaticus) is the fastest mammal and is fast becoming extinct. However, there are still a few of them living in Iran.
Cheetah and Tiger are two of the cat-like species that are becoming extinct in Iran. In the recent years, Iranian lion and Mazandarani tiger became extinct in Iran. The reasons that caused the extinction included; a) destroying their habitats, b) illegal hunting, c) shortage of their food supplies which was also caused by illegal hunting of deer and rabbits, d) building factories and roads in the environments and areas where these animals live. Until a few years ago, it was estimated that about 100 Persian Cheetah lived in Iran. However, the new estimates show that there are only less than 50 of them that are still alive in Iran.
Recently, the NGOs and activists working on behalf of natural heritage have been working on preservation of these tigers. However, since they had no assistance from governmental organizations, their efforts were not effective. As the director of the committee for preservation of Persian Cheetahs states: “In the last ten years, twenty seven Persian Cheetahs have been killed by hunters. Eleven cases have been because of accidents with cars in the areas where these animals live. In spite of these losses and the warnings for their extinction, the government is now building a new road in the restricted areas like the Bafgh Mountain of Yazd, where these animals live (therefore leading to more tigers and animals dying).”