What Is the Cheetah's Food Web?

By Erin Askeland

The cheetah is a large species of feline that lives primarily in the grasslands of Africa. Its speed allows it to chase other animals down for food and to avoid predators.

Cheetah 7
cheetah snacking on meat
credit: Joshelerry/iStock/Getty Images


Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus), hunting on savannah, Kenya
cheetah in grasslands
credit: Anup Shah/Digital Vision/Getty Images

The African grasslands and savannas provide the cheetah coverage when stalking its prey. The cheetah then sprints toward the prey and knocks it to the ground, using its teeth to bite the animal's neck.

Main Diet

Burchell s Zebra
zebra running
credit: Fuse/Fuse/Getty Images

Cheetahs subside on animals such as gazelle, zebras, warthogs, impalas and other smaller prairie dwellers. They also eat birds and rodents on occasion.

Prey's Diet

Gazelle in Tsavo East
gazelle eating grass
credit: sonnen_klang/iStock/Getty Images

Animals that cheetahs consume have vegetarian diets. Therefore, the grass and grains these smaller animals feed on get passed on to the cheetah.


A Cheetah Parent and a Child, Differential Focus, Side View
cheetah cub beside its mother
credit: DAJ/amana images/Getty Images

Cheetahs are most vulnerable as cubs and have to avoid predators like lions, eagles and hyenas. Cheetah mothers hide their cubs during the first few weeks of their lives.

Fun Fact

Byzantine mosaic of leopard and olive tree. Cyrenaica, Libya
ancient tile mosaic of cheetah
credit: johncopland/iStock/Getty Images

Ancient royalty used to train cheetahs for hunting purposes, and the cheetah appears in many of their drawings.