New Delhi: A second batch of 12 cheetahs is likely to arrive in India from South Africa in January, sources said on Tuesday.
Discussions with South African authorities to translocate 12 cheetahs to Kuno are at an advanced stage and the animals are likely to arrive in January, a Union Environment ministry source said.
According to the 'Action Plan for Reintroduction of Cheetah in India' prepared by the Wildlife Institute of India, around 12-14 wild cheetahs (8-10 males and 4-6 females) that are ideal for establishing a new cheetah population would be imported from South Africa, Namibia and other African countries as a founder stock for five years initially and then as required by the programme.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had released the first batch of eight cheetahs -– five females and three males -– from Namibia into a quarantine enclosure at the Kuno National Park on his birthday on September 17.
The cheetah has come back to India 70 years after the species was declared extinct in the country in 1952.
The large carnivore got completely wiped out from the country due to over-hunting and habitat loss.