Just like no two people are the same, no two zebras have the same stripes. Here are some other interesting facts about zebras.
- Zebras are extremely social. They prefer to graze and groom together and will only go to sleep if they are in a group so that they can be warned if a predator approaches.
- Zebras are brave animals that care deeply about their group members. If a group member was attacked by a predator, other zebras will surround the wounded one in attempt to drive the predator away and keep it safe.
- Zebras can run up to 65 km/h (40 mph). They combine fast running with excellent stamina and zig-zagging motion to try and evade their predators that chase them.
- Although their appearance may seem like a poor excuse of camouflage, when zebras are huddled in one large group, their stripes merge into a large mass and it makes it harder for the predator to target an individual animal.
- When zebras migrate, it is considered to be one of the world’s most awe-inspiring migrations across the Serengeti plains.
- In Native American shamanism, the zebra is the symbol of balance, agility, and clarity without filters.
- If you look at a zebra’s stripes, for some, it may be soothing and can be compared to the Eastern yin-yang symbols with the balancing of opposites as seen in the white and black coloration.
- All zebras are close to their mothers and will nurse for the first year of their life. Male zebras also form strong bonds with their fathers as well unlike some other mammals.
- Ever wonder how a zebra communicates? If you listen closely, you may notice various vocal expressions including sniffing and balking, but you may also notice certain body movements. For example, zebras can turn their ears in almost any direction and use this to express their mood (i.e. ears pulled back mean angry).
- Zebras have an average lifespan of 25 years and typically reach adult maturity around 3 to 6 years old – Imagine being an adult at 3 or even 6!
- Research on zebras has revealed a few subspecies of zebras, each of which has their own conservation efforts as most of them are endangered or threatened.
- Zebras belong to the genus Equus, the same one that has horses and donkeys.
- If a donkey and a zebra have an offspring, it is called a “zedonk.” (Yes this has happened before). If you cross other species with a zebra they’re known as a zebroid.
So next time you are at a zoological park or in the wild and you encounter a zebra, look and see if you can notice the differences between the zebras based on their stripes or maybe try to listen and hear them communicate!