Saturday, March 21, 2015

Hartmann's Mountain Zebra

There are three species of zebra: the plains zebra, the mountain zebra and the Grevy's zebra. On our trip to Africa we saw two of the species, the Grant's zebra, which is a subspecies of the plains zebra, and the Grevy's zebra. On our recent trip to Texas we saw the third species at Fossil Rim Wildlife Center, the Hartmann's mountain zebra, one of two subspecies of the mountain zebra, the other being the cape mountain zebra. One of the differentiating features of the mountain zebra is a dewlap, a small lump on the throat that is more pronounced in the cape mountain than the Hartmann's. 
Note the small dewlap on the throat of this Hartmann's mountain zebra. Also note the buff background color, particularly pronounced on the upper back. 
I like the large black stripes and large white gaps on the rump and the braided look on the backside above the tail.
Like the Grevy's, the Hartmann's does not have stripes on the belly. The background color of the cape mountain zebra is white, but the background color of the Hartmann's mountain zebra is slightly buff. 
I love the profusion of stripes going in different directions with different widths.
There are an estimated 9,000 Hartmann's mountain zebras in the wild. They are found in the transition zones between the Namib Desert and central plateau in Namibia, with some extending into southwestern Angola. 
We were able to get much closer to these zebras than those in Africa.

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