“Where have all the cheetahs gone?” That’s what I felt like singing not so many years ago. But my luck changed after going cheetah tracking and on a recent visit to the Kgalagadi I nearly lost count. By Romi Boom

At the time Wild’s digital editor Kate Collins was incredulous. “You always come back with the most amazing sightings, I can’t believe that the cheetahs are evading you,” she commented.

Then things changed when I went cheetah tracking in Mountain Zebra National Park and came across the famous Nixi, lying in the shade, flicking her tail and quite happy to tolerate our presence.

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On my latest trip to Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park I spotted no fewer than 12 cheetahs. This included two drop-dead gorgeous brothers walking into the golden sunset, no photographer could wish for better light. I also saw a female with a blood-stained mouth feeding in the shade, where photo opportunities were challenging to say the least. Even so, while mom was ripping into supper I had fun watching three teeny-weeny cubs through my binoculars.

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Another memorable sighting was of a springbok watching a cheetah stroll past, strutting its stuff. I waited for the right moment when both were aligned in the frame and although I would have been a lot happier had there been more light on the cheetah, at least I have a photo that brings back exciting memories.

The lesson I’ve learnt is never to lose heart when you’re on a game drive. Who knows, those elusive wild dogs may yet favour me with a sighting.

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