The city of Tshwane has warned its residents about a cheetah on the loose; the predator escaped the Rietvlei Nature Reserve on Tuesday.

It is not clear how the cheetah escaped the reserve but the city suspects the animal may have got out using a hole dug by smaller animals under a fence.

The City of Tshwane spokesperson, Selby Bokaba in a statement said “The fence is also electrified and cheetahs in the past never managed to exit the nature reserve. The parameter  is patrolled daily and repairs are done regularly to prevent incidents like this”.

A sighting of the cheetah outside the nature reserve was first reported by a nearby landowner, who informed the reserve’s management, the city said.

Bokaba also said “The cheetah has a neck collar that sends signals  for tracing purposes. Members of the EWT [Endangered Wildlife Trust] team are in a process to try and  capture the animal. A veterinarian is also standby  to tranquillise the animal”.

Visitors and members of the public can report sightings of the predator by calling 082-322-5639.