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A Plains Zebra has rather broad stripes, especially towards its rump, with colour ranging from black to dark brown. There may be a brown ‘shadow stripe’ between a black and white stripe.
Other zebra species differ: Grevy’s Zebra has narrow, closely spaced stripes over most of the body right to the hooves, and Mountain Zebras have faint stripes between darker stripes.
While Plains Zebra are common in the Africa, they are vulnerable to loss of habitat and, like many species, to hunting.
Thier cousins, the Grevy's Zebra is on the brink of extinction.
It's estimated that there are just 2,000 Grevy's Zebra left in the wild and Zoos Victoria is working to save this species through a program called Beads for Wildlife.
Plains Zebras are social animals. They form family groups of stallion, several mares and foals, and unattached males form bachelor groups. In seasonally dry areas such as the Serengeti in Tanzania, small families of Plains Zebras gather to form large herds. Staying together as families within the herd, they travel up to 800km each year in an annual migratory trek that returns to the Serengeti.
Because of the prevalence of predators, Plains Zebras are restless and alert, and very vocal. They make a barking sound. There is always a family member awake to watch out for predators.
- It was previously thought that zebras were white with black stripes. However, embryological evidence shows that the animal’s background colour is actually black and the white stripes and bellies are additions
- Every zebra has its own unique pattern of black and white stripes.
- Like horses, zebras sleep standing up, and only sleep when other zebras are around to warn them of predators
Together we can improve animal care, reduce threatening processes and save endangered species.
- Healesville Sanctuary
- Werribee Open Range Zoo
- Melbourne Zoo