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Goal: 30,000 Progress: 4,164
Sponsored by: The Rainforest Site

One of the most magnificent animal icons in the world is in greater danger of becoming extinct than anyone realized. The cheetah, known for its incredible agility and top speed of 75 mph, is now racing against the clock for its very survival. The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the global authority on threatened species, can help prevent this tragedy by upgrading cheetah status on their Red List to "endangered."

An important new study led by the Zoological Society of London, the Wildlife Conservation Society, and Panthera has revealed that only 7,100 cheetahs remain in the wild. The lead author, Dr. Sarah Durant, calls the study the most comprehensive analysis of cheetah status to date. She adds, "Our findings show that the large space requirements for cheetah, coupled with the complex range of threats faced by the species in the wild, mean that it is likely to be much more vulnerable to extinction than was previously thought."

Those threats are all caused by humans. Habitat fragmentation is the big one - a glaring 77% of cheetah habitat is unprotected today. Other major threats include conflict with livestock, deadly encounters with vehicles, and the deliberate theft of over a thousand cubs to be sold on the black market as high-status exotic pets. 85% of those cubs died after being stolen from their mothers.

The revised population total and the drastic decline of the cheetah population must not be ignored. The IUCN should recognize the gravity of the situation, and immediately raise the cheetah's conservation status from "vulnerable" to "endangered." The IUCN Red List is a vital tool that governments around the world use to allocate funding and resources to needed conservation efforts. This update will directly encourage the international community to strengthen protections for the cheetah, and could be the very key to their survival.

Nobody wants to see cheetahs disappear from the world forever. Tell the IUCN to act now.

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Dear Inger Andersen, IUCN Director General:

The recent in-depth study of the global cheetah population conducted by the Zoological Society of London, the Wildlife Conservation Society, and Panthera has revealed that the species Acinonyx jubatus is in greater danger of extinction than any of us realized. The current status of "vulnerable" is based largely on approximations that assume that the total population is over 10,000 individuals. It also assumes a decline of 30% over the last 3 cheetah generations.

The new study clearly shows that the species' decline is actually much greater than expected. 77% of cheetah habitat is unprotected. This leaves the 7,100 remaining individuals severely vulnerable to habitat loss, conflict with livestock, hunting, deadly encounters with vehicles, and poaching of cubs to feed the black market's exotic pet trade. Zimbabwe's cheetah population is a telling example, plummeting from over a thousand animals to just 170 in 16 years. That's a staggering 85% population loss.

The current population reduction rate based on this study would appear to fit the criteria for an "endangered" status, and the extinction probability in the near future is also higher than previously assumed. Surely this qualifies the cheetah, an iconic species, for the protections afforded by an official IUCN status of "endangered." Such a designation would help the international community to strengthen protections for the species, which could be the key to their very survival.

Please reevaluate the cheetah's status for the Red List, and change it from "vulnerable" to "endangered." We all want to see this species survive for future generations.

Petition Signatures


Mar 24, 2017 Pamela Rogers
Mar 24, 2017 Claudia Hartwig
Mar 24, 2017 Tilly Vandevenne
Mar 24, 2017 Giovanna Perini-Folesani
Mar 23, 2017 Kurt Phillips
Mar 23, 2017 Polly Ruddle Please save these magnificent creatures so future generations can enjoy them.
Mar 23, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Mar 23, 2017 Sarah Mac Crossan
Mar 23, 2017 Jenna Wilson
Mar 23, 2017 Laura Vera
Mar 23, 2017 Teala Curtis
Mar 23, 2017 KAREN WASSING
Mar 23, 2017 lia schiltmans
Mar 23, 2017 Stephanie Hermiston
Mar 23, 2017 Felecia Markham
Mar 23, 2017 Ash Rawal
Mar 23, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Mar 23, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Mar 23, 2017 Colin Crooke
Mar 22, 2017 Jennifer Johnson
Mar 22, 2017 Roberta George
Mar 22, 2017 Sharon Helin
Mar 22, 2017 Kimberly Westbrook
Mar 22, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Mar 22, 2017 Andrea Long
Mar 22, 2017 Lauren Russell
Mar 22, 2017 Todd Christ Strengthen protection of cheetah, please
Mar 22, 2017 Sigrid Jahn
Mar 22, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Mar 22, 2017 Carol Guadagno Protect our beautiful Cheetahs now !
Mar 22, 2017 Susan E Allard Cheetahs are such a unique cat I can't imagine the world without them.
Mar 22, 2017 nadine b
Mar 22, 2017 jim martin
Mar 22, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Mar 22, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Mar 22, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Mar 22, 2017 Elaine Reece
Mar 22, 2017 C Wu Please help making cheetah-trafficking illegal and save them from extinction!
Mar 21, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Mar 21, 2017 DOROTHY MILLIGAN
Mar 21, 2017 Laura Bertram
Mar 21, 2017 Catherine Mitchell
Mar 21, 2017 Sherri Shannon
Mar 21, 2017 Gennie Frey Humans have done enough damage- now we need to try and fix some of our mistakes. Please help protect and save the cheetahs!!
Mar 21, 2017 Heather Thompson When will men understand that we are all interconnected? Just because we are at the top of the food chain doesn't mean we should be the only thing left on this planet.
Mar 21, 2017 Jackie Davis Please help save the cheetahs!
Mar 21, 2017 Amanda Goetz
Mar 21, 2017 Lisa Seeley
Mar 20, 2017 Diana Drummond
Mar 20, 2017 John and Deborah Haynes

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