When they are in a herd the zebra’s distinct stripes merge into a big mass and make it hard for predators to single out individual animals.
All about the Zebra
- Just like human fingerprints, Zebra stripe patterns are unique to the individual.
- Zebra are highly social and will only go to sleep if they are close to neighbours so that they can be warned if a predator approaches. They also prefer to graze together and will groom each other.
- Zebra are brave animals that care deeply about their group members. When a group member is wounded by a predator attack, other zebras will come to their defence, circling the injured individual and attempting to drive the predator(s) away.
- Mother zebra are very caring and protective mothers. Infant zebras (foals) are able to stand, walk and suckle shortly after birth, and will continue to drink their mother’s milk for the first year of life.
- All zebra are close to their mothers, but males also form strong bonds with their fathers.
- Zebra communicate with each other through various vocal expressions including sniffing and balking, but also through the position of their ears and tail. They can turn their ears in almost any direction and harness this ability to communicate their mood e.g. pulled backwards when angry, or standing erect when feeling calm and friendly.
- Zebra can run up to 40mph (65km/h). They combine this fast running with excellent stamina as well as being able to run in zig-zagging motions to evade predators that are chasing them.
- Although they may appear to be badly camouflaged, when they are in a herd the zebra’s distinct stripes merge into a big mass and make it hard for predators to single out individual animals.
- Massive herds consisting of tens of thousands of zebra perform one of the world’s most awe-inspiring migrations across the Serengeti plains.
- In Native American shamanism, the zebra is a symbol of balance, agility, clarity, and sureness of path.
- Type: Mammal
- Diet: Herbivore
- Lifespan: Around 25 years
- Size: 3.5-5 ft tall at the shoulder
- Weight: 200-450 kg
- Habitat: Grasslands, savannas, woodland, mountains, scrubland and coastal hills
- Range: Africa
- Scientific name: Zebra species are members of the genus Equus