is a part of the horse family, Equidae, native to central, eastern
and southern Africa. They are most well known for their distinctive
black and white stripes. The most common type of zebra is the
flourish in huge herds upon open grasslands and semi-desert areas of
Africa. They share habitat with antelope, which do not compete for
food. Also, mixing of herds may help protect them from predators
such as lions and hyenas with power in numbers.
Grant's zebra is
one of several sub-species of Plains zebras. These zebras average 53
inches in height and weigh between 500 and 700 pounds. It is
distinguished from other Plains zebras by the presence of leg
striping down to the hooves and broad stripes on a white background.
are an excellent camouflage because lions (zebras main predator) are
believed to be color blind. Confusion is another defense
mechanism. Zebras cluster together to confuse would-be predators
with their stripes when they feel threatened.
scientists suggest that stripes act as a cooling system through a
process called convection. As the zebra stands in the sun, the black
stripes grow to be 10 degrees Celsius hotter than the white stripes.
A special layer of fat beneath black stripes insulates the zebra,
allowing it to withstand the higher temperature. Heat causes air to
circulate: sweaty hot air rises off the stripes and is replaced by
cooler, dryer air. Like a fan, the evaporation of sweat cools the
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