There’s a new set of stripes in Denver Zoo’s Zebra yard today. An endangered female Grevy’s (Greh-veez) Zebra was born in the evening on June 13. Within the first day, the unnamed foal was already comfortably exploring her new home with her mother, Topaz, who kept near her new baby. Guests can see mom and daughter with the entire herd in the yard now.
This is the third foal for Topaz and she is still proving to be an excellent mother, carefully shepherding the young foal around their yard. Topaz and the foal’s father, Punda, were paired under recommendation of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Species Survival Plan (SSP), which ensures healthy populations and genetic diversity among zoo animals. Fortunately, the couple has proved to be an excellent match.
Photo Credit: Denver ZooTake a look at baby and mom outside in the sun!
Grevy’s Zebras are considered endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), with a wild population estimated at fewer than 2,000 individuals. Their largest threats come from loss of habitat, competition with livestock, and poaching. They have disappeared from most of their former habitats and are now only found in dry deserts and open grasslands in northern Kenya and southeastern Ethiopia.
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There are three different species of zebra: Plains or Common Zebra, Mountain Zebra, and Grevy’s Zebra. Grevy’s Zebra were named for Jules Grevy, a former president of France, to whom the first known specimen of the animal was sent in 1882. The largest of all wild equine species, they can be distinguished from other zebras by their longer legs, more narrow stripes, white, stripe-less underbellies, and large rounded ears.