Serval killed in ‘cheetah’ scare – Etete

Panic spread through Etete on Monday when two primary school boys killed a serval cat, which was incorrectly identified as a cheetah.

Afikile Mthethwa (14) from Velani Township was with a friend, looking for mushrooms near a sugar cane farm when they saw the large cat.

According to his mother, Zodwa Dindi, the boys believed the cat was attacking them and Mthethwa defended himself, hitting the cat with a rock.

“His friend stabbed it with scissors, while Mthethwa kept on throwing stones at it,” said the mother.

The Courier obtained a photo of the animal and had it identified as a serval.

The carcass of the serval cat that was killed in Etete on Monday by two school boys who thought it was a cheetah.

KZN Wildlife head of corporate affairs and marketing Musa Mntambo said serval cats are not generally aggressive animals but it is important to note that they are wild and their behaviour could not be predicted.

It is however rare that a serval would attack a human.

“If you see it in the bush, it will probably run away so we advise that you let it go. However, if you see it in your yard you can notify us to come and assist in having it returned to the wild,” he said.

The serval is an African wild cat that looks very much like a cheetah, but is much smaller, and has the longest legs percentage-wise of any cat species.

Also read: UPDATE: Blythedale drowning victim’s family filled with sorrow

Servals can reach speeds of over 50 miles per hour, but they usually use their long legs for stalking and then pouncing on prey.

Perhaps the serval’s most remarkable characteristic is its enormous ears. The back of the ears are solid black with a large white dot on each.

The cats are active at dawn and dusk, hunting in the tall grass for small rodents and reptiles, but are also known to swat birds out of the air if the opportunity arises.

Although they spend most of their time on the ground, they will climb trees to escape predators.

Do you want to receive news alerts via WhatsApp? Send us a WhatsApp message (not an sms) with your name and surname to 061 718 4438.

Please read our WhatsApp broadcast list disclaimer.
Join the conversation on FacebookTwitter and Instagram

  AUTHOR
Sboniso Dlamini
Journalist

Latest News

COMMENTS

Top

Thanks for your referral. We have no doubt your friends will love our newsletter as much as you!

Don't forget to verify your email.

to our FREE newsletter
SUBSCRIBE to our FREE newsletter.




SELECT your titles:

North Coast Courier


Get regular news updates sent directly to your inbox.

Your source of local breaking news and trending stories from across the country.

Be a part of our growing community

1MILFacebook Fans
98KTwitter Followers
5MILMonthly Readers
12MILArticles Published Every Month
72Local Community Websites
CLICK HERETo view an example of our newsletter

SUBSCRIBE to our FREE newsletter

SELECT your titles:

North Coast Courier

Get regular news updates sent directly to you inbox.

Your source of local breaking news and trending stories from across the country.

Be a part of our growing community

Subscribe Here
1MILFacebook Fans
98KTwitter Followers
5MILMonthly Readers
12MILArticles Published Every Month
72Local Community Websites
Your details:


Your friends: