Five Wild-Ass Facts About Zebras
Backside of the Grevy’s Zebra in Lewa Conservancy, Kenya.
1. Zebras have mad self-protection methods! Vulnerable but powerful, zebras are prey to nearly every four-legged hunter. Lions, hyenas and even Nile crocodiles hunt these beautiful creatures. Because they must be on the defensive constantly, zebras have excellent methods of self-protection. Did you know that zebras sleep while standing up and only in groups? Zebras will also stand side by side while facing opposite directions to keep an eye out for predators.
Zebras stand side by side yet face opposite directions to keep an eye out for predators.
To warn of impending danger, a zebra will bark or whine loudly if they sense a predator is nearby. They may also use the angle of their ears to communicate with other herd members.
Plains Zebras may use a high-pitched sound to alert the herd of approaching danger. Mountain Zebras may use a snorting sound to warn the herd. And, although not the most social of the species, Grevy’s Zebras will stand together as a group in solidarity when a threat approaches. Zebras will defend their herd, as well as their territory, by kicking, biting and pushing. They will engage in similar behavior when another stallion attempts to take over a herd or to display dominance in mating. If a zebra is attacked, other zebras will come to its defense and form a circle around it to ward off the predator. More commonly, they will run. And guess what?
2. Zebras are fast, y’all! Reaching speeds of up to 40 miles per hour when galloping across the plains, they are just fast enough to outrun predators.
Reaching speeds of up to 40 miles per hour when galloping across the plains, they are just fast enough to outrun predators.
3. Zebras dazzle their predators! Named for the optical illusion they create when running, a group of zebra is called a ‘dazzle’. Using their stunningly-striped coats as camouflage, zebras will move quickly together, confusing predators as they approach. Interestingly, zebras can recognize each other by their stripes.
Named for the optical illusion they create when running, a group of zebra is called a ‘dazzle’.
5. Zebras are black! It’s an age-old question: Are zebras white with black stripes are or they black with white stripes? Originally, researchers believed the former to be true, but cutting-edge genetic research has finally laid the question to rest: Zebras are, indeed, black animals with white stripes.
Zebras are, indeed, black animals with white stripes.
Going on safari should be one of the greatest adventures of your life! Genuine and entertaining, inspiring and fun. With its abundance of wildlife and dramatic landscapes, Africa is a wildlife lover’s dream destination. The key is connecting to nature through authentic experiences. A well-chosen safari will change your life and leave you with a longing to return again and again. Whether you’re dreaming of witnessing the Great Migration, experiencing spectacular African sunrises suspended 1,000 feet above the earth in a hot air balloon or trekking the Silverback Mountain Gorillas, at The Sandy Papers, we can design a safari to suit both your interests and your budget. Discover, connect and explore Africa with us!
Small herd of Plains Zebra in Tanzania’s Ngorongoro Crater.
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