Busch Gardens recently announced an upcoming addition to their Endangered Species Safari – a chance for guests to have an intimate experience with five new arrivals to the park … cheetahs!
In accordance with the international Cheetah Species Survival Plan, Busch Gardens Tampa recently welcomed Steelman (12-year-old male), Ngoma (10-year-old female), and littermates Jagati, Iraja, and Juno, who were born in October 2009. The new cheetahs came from the White Oak Conservation Center in Jacksonville, Fla., and will all be a part of Cheetah Run, “the innovative new habitat opening alongside the Cheetah Hunt launch coaster that will bring guests face to face with these agile predators and teach them about cheetahs’ plight in the wild.”
One of the main goals of the new encounter is to educate guests about the highly endangered species. With less than 10,000 cheetahs left in the world, repopulation is made difficult by many factors, including man-made threats to their survival. Since 2005, the SeaWorld and Busch Gardens Conservation Fund has donated almost $100,000 to cheetah efforts in Africa. Some of the other conservation efforts they have funded include programs for marine animals, white rhinos, and countless other species around the world.
The Endangered Species Safari is a 45-minute experience, at $39.95 per person (in addition to park admission), and includes “up-close encounters with giraffes, zebra and rhinos on the 65-acre Serengeti Plain.”
For the latest construction photos of the new Cheetah Hunt roller coaster, click here.