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Scientific Name: Equus burchelli antiquorum
Range & Habitat: Savannahs and grasslands of southern Africa
Size: 4 to 4 1/2 feet at the shoulder
Life Span: Approximately 15 years in zoos, up to 20 years in the wild
Gestation: 11-13 months
Wild Diet: Grass
Zoo Diet: Zebra pellets and grass hay
Habits: Zebras travel in family units of 5-20 members, joining other family units to form herds. Herds may number in the thousands and often associate with wildebeest, antelope and ostriches. They usually stay within five miles of a waterhole, as they must drink regularly. Because of lions, they are always cautious at waterholes. Zebras can travel faster than 40 mph for short bursts.
Zebras have a good sense of smell and excellent eyesight. Damara zebras are white with dark stripes alternating with shadow stripes. When gathered in large groups, stripes may confuse predators by making the individual zebras indistinct and by distorting true distance.
Stripe patterns are individual (like human fingerprints). A zebra can recognize a family member by the stripe pattern and voice. Family members show affection and concern for each other and pay attention to foals and old or sick members. Zebras have a rude disposition and are not generally domesticated.