What is in a name? Our desire is to choose a name for our Zebra that is fitting to him and his heritage. All the names we have chosen will tie him back to Africa and his native range. We also want to educate Austin Zoo friends as to the plight of zebra species in the wild, why they are important and a necessary part of the ecosystem. Without them, like any animal, the ecosystem will fall apart.
Our Zebra is 15 months old, he is a Grant’s Zebra. Grant’s Zebra are one of six subspecies of the Plains Zebra, of which one is extinct. The Grant’s Zebra is the smallest of all the subspecies of Plains Zebra but can still reach up to 660 pounds. The Plains Zebra is listed as Near Threatened. The next step is Vulnerable which falls under the “Endangered Umbrella”.
The Plains Zebra eat mainly grass in the wild, also digging for Corms and Rhizomes (bulb type plants). They aren’t too picky about food and will graze on most grasses, trees and bark. These Zebra tend to stay close to a good water source. Plains Zebra, as with most Zebra, live in highly social groups. A group of Zebra is called a “zeal” or “dazzle”. Within this group there is a dominant stallion, a harem of mares and recent offspring. Bachelor groups form and can consist of as many as 15 Zebra. Hierarchy within these bachelor groups is determined by age. These Zebra will play fight and challenge each other to get ready to go lead their own harem. These young bachelors tend to hover around the outskirts of the herd until they eventually leave, find other similar aged zebra and will be solidified in a herd as they get older or take over one themselves.
Our Zebra had reached an age where, in the wild, he would have left the herd and moved on to join a bachelor group. Being part of a captive herd, he did not have the opportunity to leave. Our Zebra came to us through a private donor who wished to find a new home where this young Zebra could thrive.
Our Zebra naming campaign will come to an end on September 6th, so hurry and vote for the name you like. The name with the most votes will become the name of our Zebra.
Thank you for your support, your donation will help all the animals at Austin Zoo!
Fill out the form below to submit a name or names and make a donation.