The UK’s only female Hartmann’s mountain zebra foal has been born at Blackpool Zoo. Her arrival is critical to the European Endangered Species breeding programme, with just 9,000 individuals left in the wild and 235 in captivity, including just 11 animals in UK zoos.
Mother Helene and father Fernando became parents to Tebogo in 2011, who ended a nine-year absence of Hartmann’s mountain zebra births in the UK, and Jabali born in 2015.
The foal has been named Wakanda by keepers, after the fictional African country created by Marvel Comics. She can be seen, along with her parents and brother, in the zoo’s zebra paddock.
Blackpool Zoo’s Johnpaul Houston said: “We knew that Helene was pregnant but with stillbirth rates high amongst this species we never quite know if the pregnancy will result in a healthy foal….so imagine my joy when I first saw this gorgeous little one contently feeding from mum on a rainy September morning!
“Helene is an experienced mother and is doing an incredible job of looking after her healthy, beautiful foal.”
In the wild Hartmann’s mountain zebras are found in Namibia in the extremely harsh environmental conditions of the Kunene Region in the North West. These zebras are Vulnerable due to hunting and loss of natural habitat to agriculture.
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