Photographer Marcy Mendelson & Tango, Ambassador Cheetah from Cat Haven in Northern California

“Over the last century, 90 percent of the cheetah population in the world has been killed, and it is now the most endangered animal in Africa.” — UNITED NATIONS, May 6, 2010

Chasing Cheetah is a documentary project undertaken by visual artist – conservation photographer, Marcy Mendelson.

The purpose of this work is to raise awareness of the issues that threaten the cheetah, specifically human-wildlife conflict, and to promote solutions and new ideas that will secure the long-term survival of the cheetah for future generations.

The images and content gathered from this project will be used to promote predator safe farming methods, initiatives such as a Wildlife Friendly Certification to incentivize commercial and communal farmers to live in harmony with cheetahs, and for governments to expand protected areas within the cheetah’s range.

Opportunities for involvement include joining us on safari, sponsorship of the documentary, purchasing of prints, publishing stories, pre-ordering the forthcoming book.

More on the project:

70 miles per hour. Zero to 40 in three strides at 25 feet per stride.

The world’s fastest land animal and it’s most graceful hunter is on the brink…

Once widespread across arid Africa, into the Middle East and east to India, the cheetah has suffered dramatic declines over the last century. It now lives in Africa, and a critical survive in Iran. Hunted for their spotted coats and because they sometimes attack livestock, they disappeared from many areas. More recently, widespread habitat destruction has fragmented the cheetah’s range, isolating many populations. In many areas, the cheetah’s prey has been overhunted by humans.

Conflict between cheetahs and humans needs to be moderated.  The problem continues to grow and according to some ecologists, within 20 years the cheetah population could be extinct.

New methodologies for predator-safe farming are underway and showing progress in areas such as Namibia where populations are beginning to stabilize; however, without more aggressive global intervention the loss of this species may occur within our lifetime.

Marcy has traveled to remaining cheetah strongholds in Kenya, Namibia, Botswana & South Africa to expose the human-wildlife conflict through contrasting visual profiles of rural communities protecting their livelihoods and the conservationist whose mission it is to preserve and protect the last of the cheetah populations.

Recent journeys include an extensive tour of Kenya to photograph the wild cheetah and explore the issues of rural communities living alongside the national parks who come into contact with wildlife every day.  New footage, new stories, and new media connect how we can all work together to help this magnificent cat and the people of Africa thrive!

Bookmark this site for new opportunities on how you can be part of the project!

A list of Non Governmental Organizations working across Africa can be found here: