Cheetah Trivia Quiz Questions and Answers

1: What is the conservation status of the cheetah according to the IUCN Red List?
A: Endangered
B: Critically Endangered
C: Vulnerable
D: Near Threatened
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: The cheetah is listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List due to factors like habitat loss and human conflict.

2: What is the scientific name for the cheetah?
A: Panthera onca
B: Acinonyx jubatus
C: Puma concolor
D: Felis catus
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: The scientific name for cheetah is Acinonyx jubatus, which reflects its taxonomy and unique characteristics.

3: How fast is a cheetah capable of running?
A: 40-50 km/h
B: 60-70 km/h
C: 80-90 km/h
D: 93-104 km/h
Correct Answer: D
Explanation: Cheetahs can run at speeds between 93 to 104 km/h, making them the fastest land animals.

4: Which of the following is one of the main social groups in which cheetahs live?
A: Flocks
B: Coalitions
C: Packs
D: Pods
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Male cheetahs often live in groups called coalitions, which are usually composed of brothers or unrelated males.

5: In what year was an African subspecies of cheetah introduced to India?
A: 1995
B: 2005
C: 2012
D: 2022
Correct Answer: D
Explanation: An African subspecies of cheetah was introduced to India in 2022 as a part of reintroduction efforts.

6: What is the primary factor causing cub mortality in cheetahs?
A: Starvation
B: Predation by large carnivores
C: Disease
D: Poaching
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Cheetah cubs are highly vulnerable to predation by other large carnivores.

7: What adaptation allows cheetahs to make sharp turns while running?
A: Claws
B: Tail
C: Long legs
D: Flexible spine
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Cheetahs use their long tails like rudders, which aids them in making sharp turns during their high-speed chases.

8: Which habitat is NOT typically preferred by cheetahs?
A: Savannahs
B: Arid mountain ranges
C: Tropical forests
D: Grasslands
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Cheetahs seldom occur in tropical forests; they prefer open areas with some cover.

9: How long is a cheetah’s gestation period?
A: 1-2 months
B: 2-3 months
C: 4-5 months
D: 5-6 months
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: The gestation period of a cheetah is nearly three months before giving birth to a litter.

10: Which village in Namibia is known for housing a cheetah genetics laboratory?
A: Otjiwarongo
B: Windhoek
C: Swakopmund
D: Walvis Bay
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: The Cheetah Conservation Fund operates a cheetah genetics laboratory in Otjiwarongo, Namibia.

11: What name was previously used to refer to the cheetah due to its use in hunting?
A: Speed cat
B: Hunting leopard
C: Spotted lion
D: Swift panther
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Historically, cheetahs were referred to as “hunting leopards” due to their ability to be tamed and used for hunting.

12: How many subspecies of cheetah are recognized today?
A: 2
B: 3
C: 4
D: 5
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: There are four recognized subspecies of cheetah today: Southeast African, Asiatic, Northeast African, and Northwest African cheetahs.

13: Which gene mutation causes the unique coat pattern seen in the king cheetah?
A: Melanism gene
B: Albinism gene
C: Transmembrane aminopeptidase (Taqpep)
D: Fur density gene
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: The king cheetah’s distinctive coat pattern is due to a mutation in the Taqpep gene.

14: What is the major diet component of cheetahs in the Serengeti?
A: Zebras
B: Giraffes
C: Thomson’s gazelles
D: Elephants
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: In the Serengeti, cheetahs primarily feed on Thomson’s gazelles.

15: Why do cheetahs have a “tear mark” running from their eyes to their mouths?
A: To intimidate prey
B: For better vision
C: To protect eyes from the sun’s glare
D: To scare predators
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: The tear marks are thought to protect cheetah’s eyes from the sun’s glare, aiding their vision while hunting during the day.

16: How do cheetahs typically kill their prey?
A: Crushing their skulls
B: Piercing their hearts
C: Suffocating them with a throat bite
D: Breaking their legs
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Cheetahs typically kill their prey by biting its throat to suffocate it.

17: For which disease-causing agent were cheetahs found to have exceptionally high mortality in Oregon’s breeding facility in 1983?
A: Rabies
B: Feline coronavirus
C: Feline leukemia
D: Parvovirus
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: A feline coronavirus outbreak in 1983 in an Oregon breeding facility resulted in a high mortality rate in cheetahs.

18: What special attribute of cheetahs contributes to their poor breeding success in captivity?
A: Low genetic variability
B: Excessive physical activity
C: Overeating
D: Noise sensitivity
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Cheetahs have unusually low genetic variability, leading to poor breeding success in captivity.

19: Which human activity poses a major conflict leading to cheetah mortality in Namibia?
A: Logging
B: Poaching
C: Livestock farming
D: Urbanization
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: In Namibia, cheetahs are often killed by farmers who attempt to protect their livestock.

20: What is unusual about the claws of a cheetah compared to other big cats?
A: They are sharper
B: They are fully retractable
C: They are partly retractable
D: They lack a protective sheath
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Cheetahs have partly retractable claws, which differ from the fully retractable claws of other big cats.

21: How long can cheetah cubs remain dependent on their mother?
A: 6 months
B: 12 months
C: 18 months
D: 20 months
Correct Answer: D
Explanation: Cheetah cubs usually become independent by around 20 months of age.

22: What helps improve the catching skills in cheetah cubs?
A: Watching their mother catch prey
B: Playing
C: Training by humans
D: Following scent trails
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Playing helps improve catching skills in cheetah cubs as they practice hunting techniques.

23: Which ancient civilization is thought to have first tamed cheetahs for hunting?
A: Romans
B: Egyptians
C: Greeks
D: Persians
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Ancient Egyptians are believed to have first tamed cheetahs, using them in hunts and adorning them with ornate collars and leashes.

24: What strategic body part of the cheetah aids in maintaining balance during sharp turns?
A: Legs
B: Head
C: Tail
D: Spine
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: The cheetah’s long, muscular tail helps in maintaining balance and steering during sharp turns while chasing prey.

25: Which sensory ability do cheetahs primarily use for hunting their prey?
A: Hearing
B: Smell
C: Sight
D: Taste
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Cheetahs primarily rely on their keen sense of sight to hunt for prey.

26: How much of the global cheetah population was estimated in 2021?
A: 3,500
B: 6,517
C: 10,000
D: 12,000
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: In 2021, the global cheetah population was estimated at 6,517.

27: Where was the woolly cheetah specimen first described?
A: North America
B: Australia
C: South Africa
D: Europe
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: The woolly cheetah specimen was first described based on a South African specimen.

28: What is the term for a cheetah’s intense bird-like call?
A: Hiss
B: Growl
C: Chirp
D: Howl
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: The intense bird-like call used by cheetahs is referred to as a chirp.

29: What is the factor allowing cheetah cubs to be so vulnerable to predation?
A: High birth rates
B: Maternal neglect
C: They remain hidden for the first two months
D: Lingering smell
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Cheetah cubs remain hidden for the first two months, which makes them vulnerable to predators.

30: What is one significant reason why male cheetahs form coalitions?
A: To hunt larger prey
B: To defend larger territories
C: To increase their chances of finding females
D: To protect their young ones
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Male cheetahs form coalitions to increase their chances of encountering and acquiring females for mating.

31: Which body part of cheetahs helps them maintain good traction during their high-speed chases?
A: Paws
B: Nose
C: Eyes
D: Tail
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Cheetahs have semi-retractable claws and rough paw pads that help them maintain traction during high-speed chases.

32: What factor greatly limits male cheetahs’ chances of survival when they live in solitude?
A: Lack of prey
B: Lower territory sizes
C: Lower health and lack of coalition support
D: Frequent predator attack
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Solitary male cheetahs generally have poorer health and lack the support provided by coalitions, impacting their chances of survival.

33: In which century did cheetah populations in India become critically endangered leading to extirpation?
A: 16th century
B: 19th century
C: 20th century
D: 21st century
Correct Answer: 20th century
Explanation: Cheetah populations in India became critically endangered and eventually extirpated in the mid-20th century.

34: How does the lesser amount of genetic variability in cheetahs affect their health?
A: Increased predatory behavior
B: Enhanced vocal capabilities
C: Increased susceptibility to diseases and defects
D: Better prey-catching skills
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: The low genetic variability in cheetahs increases their susceptibility to various diseases and genetic defects.

35: What is the typical color pattern of a cheetah’s coat?
A: Rosettes
B: Solid black spots
C: Stripes
D: Blotchy spots
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Cheetah coats have evenly spaced, solid black spots.

36: Who first described the cheetah species based on a specimen from the Cape of Good Hope?
A: Reginald Innes Pocock
B: Johann Christian Daniel von Schreber
C: Philip Sclater
D: Joshua Brookes
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Johann Christian Daniel von Schreber first described the cheetah species based on a skin from the Cape of Good Hope.

37: Which word best describes the morphological adaptations of cheetahs compared to other large cats?
A: Heavier
B: Robust
C: Slender
D: Compact
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Cheetahs have a slender, canine-like form adapted for speed, contrasting sharply with the robust build of other large cats.

38: What is the primary prey for cheetahs in the Iranian deserts?
A: Goitered gazelle
B: Wildebeest
C: Common eland
D: African buffalo
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: In the Iranian deserts, cheetahs primarily prey on goitered gazelles.

39: How was the introduction of cheetahs to India in 2022 broadly classified?
A: As a successful conservation effort
B: As an experimental basis
C: As a national heritage project
D: As an international collaboration
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: The introduction of cheetahs to India in 2022 was on an experimental basis to see if they could adapt to the new habitat.

40: What unique feature do cheetah cubs have at birth?
A: Larger paws
B: Clear coat patterns
C: Long bluish-grey hair on their nape, shoulders, and back
D: Retractable claws
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Cheetah cubs are born with a long bluish-grey mantle of fur on their nape, shoulders, and back that provides camouflage from predators.

41: Why do cheetahs generally avoid tropical forests?
A: Lack of prey
B: High predation risk
C: Poor visibility for hunting
D: Unsuitable temperatures
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Cheetahs avoid tropical forests due to poor visibility, which hampers their ability to stalk and chase prey.

42: What percentage of their hunts are typically successful for cheetahs?
A: 50–60%
B: 25–40%
C: 70–80%
D: 10–20%
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Cheetahs have a hunting success rate of about 25–40%, which is higher for smaller and more vulnerable prey.

43: What does the scientific term “Acinonyx” likely refer to in cheetahs?
A: Lack of speed
B: Immovable spots
C: Immobile nails
D: Short legs
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: The term “Acinonyx” refers to “immobile nails,” a reference to the cheetah’s limited ability to retract its claws.

44: What is the primary purpose of the Cheetah Conservation Fund in Namibia?
A: Conducting global cheetah censuses
B: Hosting wild cheetah exhibitions
C: Field research and cheetah education
D: Providing nurturing spots for mating
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: The Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF) is focused on field research and education about cheetahs on a global platform.

45: What puzzle did a 2013 study pose regarding cheetah hunting chases and body temperature?
A: Body temperature drops
B: High temperatures limit hunts
C: Hunts continue despite high body heat
D: Need for water increases
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: A 2013 study found that cheetahs could continue hunts despite their body temperature not rising excessively, challenging the theory that high temperature limits their chase length.

46: What is the major role of female cheetahs in their social structure?
A: Establishing smaller territories
B: Leading nomadic lives searching for prey
C: Protecting their territory fiercely
D: Forming coalitions for hunting
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Female cheetahs lead nomadic lives searching for prey within large home ranges.

47: Why might cheetahs prefer low-density human-populated regions?
A: Better weather
B: More abundant prey
C: Lower competition for territory
D: Lesser risk of habitat conflict
Correct Answer: D
Explanation: Cheetahs prefer low-density human-populated regions to reduce the risk of habitat conflicts and human-wildlife encounters.

48: Which body organ adaptation is specifically significant for cheetahs during a chase, allowing them to quickly regain stamina?
A: Enlarged kidneys
B: Reduced pancreas
C: Enlarged heart and lungs
D: Enhanced liver enzymes
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Cheetahs have enlarged hearts and lungs that allow quick oxygen enrichment of blood, enabling them to quickly regain stamina post-chase.

49: What was a main finding of the Cheetah Conservation Fund’s “Bushblok” initiative?
A: Successful cheetah breeding
B: Habitat restoration through bush thinning
C: Increase in prey population
D: Higher cub survival rates
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: The “Bushblok” initiative focused on habitat restoration through targeted bush thinning and biomass utilization.

50: What historical misconception did Romans have about cheetahs based on a misinterpretation of their early life appearance?
A: Cheetahs were tigers
B: Cheetahs were leopards
C: Cheetahs were a crossbreed of lions and leopards
D: Cheetahs were large dogs
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Romans believed cheetahs to be a hybrid between a lion and leopard due to their mantle and difficulty in breeding them in captivity.

51: How many cheetahs were historically said to be kept by Akbar the Great?
A: 100
B: 1000
C: 1500
D: 2000
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Mughal ruler Akbar the Great was said to have kept as many as 1000 cheetahs in his courts for hunting purposes.

52: What significant aspect of their anatomy makes cheetahs unable to roar?
A: Smaller heart
B: Blunt claws
C: Sharp-edged vocal fold
D: Reduced jaw muscle
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Cheetahs cannot roar due to the presence of a sharp-edged vocal fold within their larynx.

53: Which part of Iran houses the cheetah population that is the only surviving in central Asia?
A: Western Iran
B: Northern Iran
C: Central Iran
D: Southern Iran
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: The only surviving cheetah population in central Asia is confined to the central desert regions of Iran.

54: Why might cheetahs, unlike leopards, have a higher difficulty coexisting with humans?
A: Larger home ranges
B: Nocturnal habits
C: Tamer nature
D: Territorial aggression
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Cheetahs require larger home ranges and therefore might face more difficulty coexisting in human-dominated landscapes compared to more adaptable species like leopards.

55: In what way is the dust-to-spot pattern unique to each cheetah?
A: Marks individuality for identity
B: Enhances hunting camouflage
C: Indicates diet preference
D: Determines gender of the cheetah
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Each cheetah has a unique pattern of black spots that can be used to identify individual animals.

56: What physical feature forms the major similarity between cheetahs and greyhounds?
A: Retractable claws
B: Long tails
C: Morphology and ability to reach high speeds
D: Black tear marks
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Both cheetahs and greyhounds have similar morphology and the ability to reach high speeds, though cheetahs can attain much higher maximum speeds.

57: What year did researchers revise the classification of the cheetah’s subspecies to four valid taxa?
A: 1917
B: 1975
C: 2011
D: 2017
Correct Answer: D
Explanation: In 2017, researchers from the Cat Classification Task Force of the IUCN revised felid taxonomy and recognized four subspecies of cheetahs as valid.

58: Which country experienced a deadly outbreak of feline coronavirus in a cheetah breeding facility in 1983?
A: South Africa
B: Oregon, USA
C: Namibia
D: Iran
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: A breeding facility in Oregon, USA, experienced a deadly outbreak of feline coronavirus in cheetahs in 1983.

59: How did ancient Egyptians refer to cheetahs in relation to deceased pharaohs?
A: Protectors of the underworld
B: Sacred guardians
C: Guides for spirits
D: Untouchable spirits
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Ancient Egyptians believed the spirits of deceased pharaohs were taken away by cheetahs, symbolizing them as guides for spirits.

60: What factor primarily causes ecological degradation affecting cheetah habitats in Southern Africa?
A: Overhunting
B: Bush encroachment
C: Urbanization
D: Climbing temperatures
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Woody plant encroachment is a form of ecological degradation that affects cheetah habitats in Southern Africa, reducing the availability of open grasslands.

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