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While cheetahs can reach remarkable speeds, they cannot sustain a high-speed chase for very long. They must catch their prey in 30 seconds or less as they cannot maintain maximum speeds for much longer. Cheetahs spend most of their time sleeping and they are minimally active during the hottest portions of the day. They prefer shady spots and will sleep under the protection of large shady trees. Cheetahs do not hunt at night, they are most active during the morning and evening hours.