Cheetah cub up for adoption at zoo

A CHEETAH cub which featured on a television programme is up for adoption at Colchester Zoo.

James Hore

A CHEETAH cub which featured on a television programme is up for adoption at Colchester Zoo.

Katavi the cheetah is eight months old and her keepers have taken the decision to put her up for adoption.

The scheme allows visitors the chance to adopt any of the animals at the zoo, but keepers have warned them they don't actually get the chance to take them home.

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Katavi featured on television's “Zoo Days” as a tiny cub and is now gradually being introduced at the cheetah enclosure.

Staff think she will be one of the most popular animals to adopt, joining the penguins, elephants and giraffes as top choices along with Sasha the White Tiger and Rajang the Orangutan.

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A poll, carried out by BIAZA, the professional body representing British and Irish zoos and aquariums, revealed the most and least commonly adopted animals by visitors in 2008.

Among the most popular animal adoptions were tigers, giraffes, lions and pygmy hippos, but penguins claimed the top spot, with more than 3,000 members of the British public adopting a variety different species at zoos up and down the country.

Some of the less “attractive” animals like the warthogs and hyenas are often overlooked.

Anthony Tropeano, the zoo's director, said: “Animal adoptions are a great way for people to contribute to the important conservation work that is carried out by zoos across Britain and we were delighted to find that they proved to be a popular choice of gift this Valentine's Day.

“Katavi is enjoying her time at the cheetah enclosure but we are finding that she is just as happy vying for the top position with the dogs in front of the fire when she comes home in the evenings.”

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