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Rare baby zebra born at Chester Zoo
3:11pm Thursday 27th February 2014 in News
A rare baby zebra has been born at Chester Zoo.
The as yet unnamed newcomer, a Grevy’s zebra, is the first of its kind to be born at the zoo for 34 years. There are thought to be less than 2,500 left in the wild.
The foal, who was born with brown stripes that will turn black as she matures, arrived on Saturday to first time parents Nadine and Mac.
Curator of mammals, Tim Rowlands, said: “Since our female zebras arrived a few years ago we have worked very hard to breed this highly endangered species and the arrival of this foal is not only a really good achievement for us and good news for the species as a whole.
“She's a lively one but mum Nadine is doing a great job far, particularly given that it’s her first – she’s certainly earning her parental stripes.”
Conservation charity Chester Zoo is part of a European breeding programme for the species which is the largest of all zebras and distinctive from its cousins given that it has the narrowest stripes.
The Grevy’s zebra is listed as endangered in the wild. They are native to the Horn of Africa, specifically Ethiopia and Kenya, although they have become regionally extinct in Somalia and Sudan. Indeed their numbers are said to have declined by more than half over the past 20 years due to a range of factors including the reduction of available water sources, commercial hunting for their skins and disease.