Sponsor an Animal

Creature Feature: Meet some of the Milwaukee County Zoo's animals!


Scientific Name: Acinonyz jubatus
Status: Vulnerable
Geographical Range: Grasslands and open plains in parts of Africa
Where to visit me in the Zoo: Florence Mila Borchert Big Cat Country – outdoor cheetah exhibit
Zoo Diet: A base diet of 3 pounds of Nebraska premium beef, which is supplemented with other meats to give them a variety such as pork, chicks and chunk beef.
Fun Facts:
  • Cheetahs are the fastest land animal. They can reach speeds of 60 miles per hour in just three seconds. But they can only maintain this speed for short time!
  • Cheetahs can’t roar like other big cats, however, they purr, hiss, growl and make bird-like chirping sounds.
  • Cheetahs are the only cats that can turn in midair to follow prey while sprinting.
  • Cheetahs have sharp, semi-retractable claws that act like cleats when they run, giving them extra traction.
  • When cheetahs run they use their tails to help them steer, like the rudder of a boat.


Cheetah, Imara

Birth Date: November 23, 2004
The Scoop: Imara came to the Milwaukee County Zoo from the Wildlife Safari in Winston, Ore. Since her arrival, Imara has been going through basic training with her keepers such as targeting, lining up for injections and standing with her paws on the mesh for nail trims. Training is voluntary for the animals and involves rewards for responding correctly to commands. This allows Imara to assist in her own health care without the use of tranquilizers or restraints. Imara has already learned to line up and let the keepers pull out her tail for future blood draws.

To keep animals at the Zoo happy and active zookeepers provide different enrichment items. Enrichment is varied between five main categories – sensory, behavioral, food, environmental and manipulative. Imara responds best to food enrichment. Zookeepers scatter food in the enclosure or in puzzle feeders so Imara “hunts” for her food. She is also provided with balls, coconuts and boxes to play with. Sometimes keepers spray different items with perfumes, spices and animal scents which the animals will rub against. Currently, the zookeepers haven’t found a favorite scent for Imara but are still trying.

Imara arrived with another cheetah named Kira who is also 9 years old. Although unrelated, both cheetahs get along very well. You can tell them apart by their spots. Imara has more spots and appears darker while Kira has fewer spots. Kira also has a longer and thinner face. Imara appears to have a friendlier, more “talkative” personality of the pair.

Sponsor Imara and support all of the animals at the Milwaukee County Zoo!

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