Rare zebras make trek from Texas for new zoo display

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The Hartmann's Mountain Zebra colts will be on show at Racine Zoo from July 1.
The Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra colts will be on show at Racine Zoo from July 1.

Two yearling Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra colts have arrived at Wisconsin’s Racine Zoo from a reserve in Texas.

The pair have been in quarantine since arriving about a month ago from Rough Hollow Reserve, as part of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums Species Survival Program.

They will be on show at the zoo’s new zebra exhibit, which opens on Friday in the Land of the Giants, near the giraffe and black rhinoceros exhibits.

Hartmann’s mountain zebras (Equus zebra hartmannae) are listed as vulnerable, meaning they are at high risk of extinction in the wild as their total population is under 9000.

They are a subspecies of the Mountain Zebra (Equus zebra), and range from 10 to 14 hands in height. They are also the only equine to have a dewlap. They are native to Namibia and most commonly found in the extremely harsh environmental conditions of the Kunene Region in the North West.

The zebras are usually found in small groups and are agile climbers so inhabit steep mountainous country where they are able to live in harsh conditions.

Current studies show that the number of Hartmann’s mountain zebras in the wild could decline by more than 10 per cent in the next 25 years due to an increase in hunting and loss of natural habitat.

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