What Are the Cheetah's Behavioral Adaptations?
The cheetah has made a number of behavioral adaptations to increase survival chances, which range from staying close to the mother when young to avoid predators and the mother hiding cubs in holes or bushes while she gathers food for the young, to the fact that male cheetahs travel in groups, while the female always travels alone. Almost all behavioral adaptations are focused on survival when young, as this is when the cheetahs are most vulnerable.
In addition to the behavioral adaptations, cheetahs also have a number of physical adaptations that secure their place as the fastest land animal.
The cheetah's spots help to act as camouflage, making the animal much harder to detect when it stalks prey. This is crucial to ensuring that the cheetah can get close enough to make use of its impressive speed when combined with the element of surprise.
Cheetahs are the only species of cat that is unable to retract its claws, but this is another physical adaptation that helps the animal reach the impressive speeds it is capable of. The claws offer extra grip and power when running by digging into the ground.
Finally, the long tail of the cheetah is fundamental in providing much-needed balance and control when sprinting at high speed.