Cheetah world record sprint
Cheetahs are able to reach such speeds because of their remarkable build. A highly flexible spine allows great extension of the legs, so that one stride can span up to six metres. The cat’s sharp claws provide good grip as its paws push off. During a sprint, the cheetah is more in the air than on the ground. These cats also have light bones and a relatively large heart and lungs. Still, this kind of super-sprint is possible only for short distances, usually not more than about 500 metres.
De Cincinnati Zoo has been working for about twenty years for the conservation of wild cheetahs. In the US, zoo programmes promote awareness in schools. In Namibia, they support a breeding programme and a project using dogs to guard farmers’ herds so that the farmers no longer have to fear cheetahs – or shoot them.