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Zebras: Born Black, White…and Brown?

July 18, 2018

Zebras: Born Black, White…and Brown?

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Brent Atkinson Brent Atkinson

Just outside of our Carter Giraffe building at the Wildlife Conservation Sociey’s Bronx Zoo, you’ll find a group of animals with the most iconic fur pattern — black and white wild equid, a zeal of zebras, usually known by the latter name. At the zoo, we have Grevy’s zebras (Equus grevyi), the largest and most endangered of the zebra species.

Here are some fun facts about Grevy’s zebras. They have a 13 month gestation — the longest of any wild equid. This striped equine was formally titled in the late 1800s by the African King of Shoa for the then French Republic President Jules Grevy.

If you stop by our African Plains exhibit, you may find our newest addition to the zeal — zebra foal Coretta. Coretta was born at the zoo on Martin Luther King Day to her mother Kirafiki. In honor of the great Dr. King, we named her after his wife.

When Coretta was born, she had large ears and long legs that made her very cute — and she had a most interesting coat color. Zebras are born with mostly brown stripes. As foals grow, the brown tends to disappear into the more traditional zebra coloration of black and white.

The most enjoyable thing about Coretta is her playful attitude. Come on out and celebrate National Zookeeper Week and enjoy Coretta as a young foal — and before the brown disappears.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Watch for more zookeeper stories on Wild View and activities at the Bronx Zoo and zoos near you during National Zookeeper Week July 14-22 2018.

Nikon D5

Bronx, US Map It


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