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Cheetah Population

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Cheetah Population by Country 2024

The cheetah is part of the Felidae family. These wild cats include the lynx, bobcat, caracal, and puma. Also part of this graceful feline family tree is the South Asian fishing cat, ocelot, margay, the powerful and sleek jaguarundi, and the two-foot-tall African serval.

Native to Africa and Asia, these big cats have svelte, muscular bodies supporting climbing and average running speeds of around 64 mph. When chasing prey, the cheetah reaches speeds of 70 mph. The coat of an adult cheetah is tawny to light brown with black spots that vary in size and a white underbelly. Regional variants exist between the five subspecies.

Cheetahs have a unique social structure. The males live in small collaborative groups, but the females roam solitary unless breeding or caring for cubs. The female cheetah usually lives seven years in the wild, while the average male lives for eight years.

The spotted speedster prefers the bush and savanna woodlands - semi-open, arid territory. However, their species can survive wide temperature fluctuations, from 0ºC to 45ºC.

Categorized as a vulnerable population, with some subspecies as critically endangered, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) estimates somewhere between 4,000 and 12,000 wild cheetahs remain. The disappearance of this magnificent cat is primarily due to habitat encroachment and trophy hunting.

Approximately 200 Asiatic cheetahs live in Iran, in the provinces of Khorassan and Semnan. A few cats remain in the Isfahan, Yazd, and Kerman regions. Once a common sight in Egypt, they are now presumed extinct. The Turkestan cheetah, Acinonyx j. raddei, is also thought to be extinct.

Southern and eastern Africa contains the largest and most diverse cheetah populations. The largest verifiable wild population exists in Namibia - roughly 2,500 cats. Overall, an estimated 7,000-10,000 cats roam South Africa. Less than 100 animals live in East Africa, less than 2,000 in Sudan, and fewer than 500 live in Northeast Africa.

  • The total number of cheetahs in the world is estimated to be approximately 6,517 mature individuals.
  • However, precise per-country populations can be difficult to discern. Record-keeping is poor in some countries, and in many cases, a cheetah population's habitat ranges across multiple countries.
  • In such cases, the population estimate for the entire habitat has been divided evenly among the countries it includes.
  • For example, the Bahr/Salama landscape touches both Chad and the Central African Republic and is home to an estimated 218 cheetahs, so each country is listed as having 109 cheetahs.
  • Actual populations may differ significantly, as real-world cheetahs are unlikely to be split evenly among countries at any given time.

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Country
Cheetah Population
Cheetah Status
Subpopulation and Habitats
Tanzania938Extant (resident)Serengeti/Mara/Tsavo/Laikipia landscape (625 from 1250 shared w/ Kenya) | Ruaha landscape (184) | Katavi-Ugalla landscape (55) | Maasai steppe (47)
South Africa849Extant (resident)849 of 3396 shared with Botswana, Namibia, Mozambique
Mozambique849Extant (resident)849 of 3396 shared with Botswana, Namibia, South Africa
Botswana849Extant (resident)849 of 3396 shared with Namibia, South Africa, Mozambique
Namibia849Extant (resident)849 of 3396 shared with Botswana, South Africa, Mozambique
Kenya716Extant (resident)Serengeti/Mara/Tsavo/Laikipia landscape (625 from 1250 shared w Tanzania) | Transboundary population (58 from 175 shared w Ethiopia and South Sudan) | South Turkana (33)
South Sudan343Extant (resident)Southern National Park (135) | Badingilo National Park (78) | Radom National Park (62) | Transboundary population (58-59 from 175 shared w Ethiopia and Kenya) | Kidepo National Park and bordering areas (8-9 from 17 shared w/ Uganda) |
Ethiopia123Extant (resident)Transboundary population (58-59 from 175 shared with Kenya and South Sudan) | Ogaden landscape (29) | Blen-Afar Landscape (18) | Afar landscape (10) | Yangudi Rassa landscape (7)
Chad109Extant (resident)Bahr/Salama landscape (109 from 218 shared w/ Central African Republic)
Central African Republic109Extant (resident)Bahr/Salama landscape (109 from 218 shared w/ Chad)
Zimbabwe90Extant (resident)Hwange National Park (46) | Southern Zimbabwe (37) | Matusadona (3) | Rhino Conservancy (4)
Zambia89Extant (resident)
Algeria88Extant (resident)Adrar des Ifhogas/Ahaggar/Tassili N'Ajjer (87-88 from 175 shared w/ Mali)
Mali88Extant (resident)Adrar des Ifhogas/Ahaggar/Tassili N'Ajjer (87-88 from 175 shared w/ Algeria)
Angola24Extant (resident)
Niger11Extant (resident)WAP complex (8 of 23 shared w/ Benin and Burkina Faso) | Air et Ténéré and Termit Massif (2-3)
Uganda9Extant (resident)Kidepo National Park and bordering areas (8-9 from 17 shared w/ South Sudan)
Burkina Faso8Extant (resident)WAP complex (8 of 23 shared w/ Benin and Niger)
Benin8Extant (resident)WAP complex (8 of 23 shared w/ Burkina Faso and Niger)
IndiaExtinct
PakistanExtinct
NigeriaExtinct
EgyptPossibly Extinct
DR CongoExtinct
IranExtant (resident)
SudanPossibly Extinct
IraqExtinct
AfghanistanExtinct
MoroccoPossibly Extinct
Saudi ArabiaExtinct
UzbekistanExtinct
GhanaExtinct
Ivory CoastExtinct
CameroonExtinct
SyriaExtinct
MalawiExtinct
KazakhstanExtinct
SomaliaPossibly Extinct
SenegalExtinct
GuineaExtinct
RwandaExtinct
BurundiExtinct
TunisiaExtinct
JordanExtinct
TajikistanExtinct
IsraelExtinct
TogoPossibly Extinct
Sierra LeoneExtinct
LibyaPossibly Extant (resident)
TurkmenistanExtinct
MauritaniaExtinct
KuwaitExtinct
EritreaPossibly Extinct
Guinea BissauExtinct
EswatiniExtinct
DjiboutiPossibly Extant (resident)
Western SaharaPossibly Extinct
showing: 57 rows

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