National Zoo & Aquarium

Hello! I’m a Plains Zebra

The stripes of a Zebra make it one of the most distinctive animals on the planet. The reason for this striking pattern still eludes scientists. One theory is that the stripes break up the shape of the animals, making them almost unrecognisable to predators. Another theory is that the stripes of a herd exploding in all directions make it difficult for a predator to focus on one animal. Recent research found that the stripes also help repel biting flies. Oddly enough, while making zebras indistinguishable to other animals, zebra stripes actually help zebras recognise one another. Stripe patterns are like zebra fingerprints: Every zebra has a slightly different arrangement.

The National Zoo is home to 4 Zebras – Tambo, Kiki, Zara and a new foal Kayin.

Learn more about the national zoo & aquarium on our zooventure tour

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Plains Zebra facts

CONSERVATION STATUS Lower Risk
DISTRIBUTION Eastern and South Eastern Africa
SIZE Up to 350kg
LIFE SPAN Up to 25 years
GESTATION 12 months

Learn more about the national zoo & aquarium on our zooventure tour

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Scrivener Dam, Yarralumla, Canberra, ACT 2611

Open every day from 9:30am to 5:00pm

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