Stripes. When you see a zebra, you see stripes. The interesting part is that researchers are not entirely sure what the stripe's purpose is. The most common theory is that, when in large groups, the stripes cause an extremely confusing visual field for any nearby predators. The massive mesh of black and white makes it very hard to assess how many are in a group, as well as making it difficult to gauge how near or far the herd is. They are roughly the size of small horses, having a height between 3.5 to 5 feet and weighing between 440 and 990 lbs.
Habitat & Diet
Zebras are herbivores that eat grassland vegetation. They make their home throughout the grasslands of the savanna in southern Africa.
Zebras live in small family units of a male, several females and their young. These are called harems. The family units will also join with other groups and create herds of up to 30 strong. Individuals in a group will constantly be on the look out for predators and bark or whinny when they see a threat.
Meet our Residents
- Much like our own fingerprints, a zebra’s stripes are completely unique. No two zebras have the same pattern of stripes.
- During the colonization of Africa, many attempted to domesticate the zebra. Due to their nature as constantly wary prey animals with many natural predators however, they proved to be extremely skittish and too flighty to allow a rider on their back safely. They remain one of the few equine species to not be widely domesticated.
Status In The Wild
Although certain subspecies face more challenges than others, the conservation status of zebras is listed as Least Concern. Though they do face threats from poachers after their exotic coats as well as loss of habitat due to human expansion, zebras are doing well in the Savannas of Africa. They can live up to 25 years in the wild.