A Cheetah's Tale (Bradt Travel Guides) Hardcover – 18 Sep 2017
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'A beautifully written and entertaining book' --Cotswold Life magazine
'A royally enchanting story of the unique bond between a cheetah cub and the rather special girl who adopted her.' --The Mail on Sunday
'A much-acclaimed account of Princess Michael's two years in Africa.' --Majesty magazine
About the Author
Her Royal Highness Princess Michael of Kent is a writer, historian and lecturer. In her new book, A Cheetah's Tale, the author describes aspects of her own early life travelling in Africa and raising a cheetah cub. This unusual experience in the 1960s sparked her lifelong interest in conservation, of big cats especially. Among the many charities she supports, Princess Michael is currently Royal Patron of the Endangered Species Centre in South Africa (predominantly cheetahs) and also of The Cheetah Conservation Fund in Namibia. She lives with her husband, Prince Michael of Kent, in Kensington Palace in London. Her Royal Highness' previous books include the non-fiction historical works Crowned in a Far Country, Cupid and the King, The Serpent and the Moon. The Anjou Trilogy, VOL. 1 The Queen of Four Kingdoms, VOL.II Agnès Sorel and VOL.III Quicksilver were her first forays into writing historical fiction.
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43 years ago, Princess Michael had released a female cheetah in Gorongoza NP. Now she wishes to release more cheetah from Kapama, South Africa, into Gorongoza, Mozambique. Cheetah's have very high mortality rate. This is made worse by illegal trade in exporting cheetah cubs from East Africa to Middle East, as pets. The Princess's parents had separated when she was little and her father had moved to Portuguese East Africa (Mozambique) and remarried and started farming at Maforga farm near Gorongoza. He had to shoot a female cheetah, who could not hunt, as her paw was disabled by a trap. He found that she was in milk and traced a tiny female cub, which was handed over to the Princess. Her 1st visit to Africa was in Oct 1961. At 6 weeks, Tess was completely agile.
With her interest in horses, in 1962, the Princess was sent to South West Africa (Namibia). On return to the farm, the Princess found Tess climbing on to every thing and played with the dogs of the farm house. She also started to chase prey and make different cheetah sounds and leg thumping. She would sit up like a dog with her legs infront of her. While Tess was being trained to hunt, the Princess went to Cape Town and Kruger NP. Tess went for long walks and learnt how to run. At 24 months, Tess was mature and they gradually tried to release her in Gorongoza NP. Tess made her 1st kill. After releasing Tess, the Princess left the farm for 3 months. On return, she met Tess again in Gorongoza. After being away for 6 months, the Princess went again into the Gorongoza, this time Tess brought 2 cubs with her.
Princess Michael (Baroness Marie Christine Anna Agnes Hedwig Ida Von Reibnitz) was born on 15.1.1945, in Carlsbad, Czech Republic. She is of German and Hungarian descent. She moved to England in 1970. She was an interior designer and now an author. Her 1st husband from 14.9.1971 was English banker Thomas Troubridge. They divorced in 1977. She married Prince Michael of Kent (Michael George Charles Franklin - born 4.7. 1942) at a civil ceremony on 30.6.1978. They have 2 children - Lord Frederick Windsor (6.4.1979) and Lady Gabriella Windsor (23.4.1981). They live in 5 bedroom apartment at Kensington Palace.
Some other books of interest are:-
(1) Spotted Sphinx, Joy Adamson, 1969
(2) Pippa's Challenge, Joy Adamson, 1972
(3) Serengeti Cats, Alice Schick, 1977
(4) King Cheetah, Lena Bottriell, 1987
(5) Cheetah's of Serengeti Plains, Caro, 1994
(6) Aspects of Cheetah, L Marker, 2002
(7) Cheetahs, Tracy Rich, 2004
(8) Queen of Mara, David Drummond, 2005
(9) Cats of Africa, Luke Hunter, 2005
(10)Big Cat Diary Cheetah, Jonathan and Angie Scott, 2006
Having born in Kenya, I found this book interesting.