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Zebra Foals at the Lake District Wildlife Park
on 11th July, 2022
We have exciting new arrivals at the Lake District Wildlife Park. THREE beautiful leggy Grant’s Zebra foals. One of the foals was born earlier this year in April, the second one was born a week agon and the third one was born on Monday morning! The youngster was seen racing around the large Zebra enclosure putting those long legs to the test.
The most recent youngsters were born to Xena and Zara who are both experienced mums and have raised many foals. Although resident at the Lake District Wildlife Park and safe from predators, natural instincts kick in as if they were in the wild. Mares encourage their foals to stand and walk around as soon as they can, so that they are ready to run away from predators such as Hyenas, Cheetahs and Lions.
When Zebra foals are born their stripes are brown and as they grow older, they gradually get darker. What is unusual about the recent new-borns is that they are very dark with almost black stripes. It usually takes around a year for the brown hairs all to be replaced by black ones. In fact, they are much darker than the foal that was born a couple of months ago. Keepers are not sure why this has happened. It is just one of the wonderful things about nature.
A common question about Zebras is: are they white with black stripes or black with white stripes? And the answer is that they are black with dark skin and the white stripes are formed by hairs that have no pigment in them that are translucent.
As always, the big question remains as to whether the new youngsters are boys or girls. Keepers are keeping a close eye to find out. Even without this knowledge, staff at the Park love getting name suggestions for their animals. If you have a suggestion for our new Zebra foals, please do let us know. Or if you are visiting the Park just let one of our keepers know what you think the youngsters should be called!