On August 25, the Fort Worth Zoo welcomed a male Grant’s Zebra foal to the herd – the first to be born there since 1996!
The foal was born to first-time mom Roxie, and both mom and baby are doing well. He was up and walking shortly after his birth and soon learned to maneuver on his long, wobbly legs.
At birth, the soon-to-be named foal weighed 60 to 70 pounds and stood roughly 30 inches tall. When fully grown, he will weigh 650 to 750 pounds and measure about 44 inches tall at the shoulder.
The Fort Worth Zoo houses Grant’s Zebras, which are the smallest of the six subspecies of Plains Zebra. Native to Africa’s savannahs, Zebras feature a striking black-and-white-striped coat. Although the black and white lines on a Zebra’s coat are easy for human eyes to spot, it is difficult for Zebras’ predators, such as Lions, to differentiate individual Zebras in a herd. Plus, when a Zebra is standing in tall grass, it can be surprisingly difficult to see. Like human fingerprints, each Zebra's stripe pattern is unique.
Grant’s Zebras feed on grasses and move about in large herds, often mingling with Wildebeest. They are listed as Near Threatened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List. Grant's Zebras are the most numerous of all Zebra species or subspecies, but recent wars in their home countries have caused drastic declines in the population.