Chapman's zebra

Chapman's zebra (Equus quagga chapmani) is a subspecies of the plains zebra.

Chapman's zebra
Chapman's zebras at the Melbourne Zoo
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Perissodactyla
Family: Equidae
Genus: Equus
E. q. chapmani
Trinomial name
Equus quagga chapmani
Layard, 1865[1]

They, like their relatives, are native to the savannah of north-east South Africa, north to Zimbabwe, west into Botswana, the Caprivi Strip in Namibia, and southern Angola.[2] Chapman's zebra eats mainly grass and occasionally shrubs. They are currently at low risk status on the endangered species list, but like many other animals, are at risk because of habitat destruction and illegal poaching.


Chapman's zebra is distinguished by stripes similar to the Burchell's zebra and on the lower halves of the legs, which break up into many irregular brown spots. The pastern is not completely black on the lower half.[3] When foals are born, they have brown stripes, and in some cases, adults do not develop the black colouration on their hides and keep their brown stripes. Males usually weigh 270–360 kg (600–800 lb) pounds and stand at 120–130 cm (48–52 in) tall. Females weigh about 230–320 kg (500–700 lb) and stand as tall as the males.

Social behaviour

Chapman’s zebras live in herds of up to tens of thousands of individuals, which are made up of family groups and bachelors. Adult zebras live in harems with permanent members; consisting of one herd stallion, one to six females, and their offspring. The females stay in the same harems all their lives. Chapman’s zebras are not territorial and in the wet season move over large areas, often associated with other ungulate species, but in the dry season, stay within a 10-km range of water. Chapman’s zebras do not breed seasonally, although many births occur in the rainy season. One foal is born after 11–13 months, weighing 40–50 kg. The foals suckle for up to 12 months, but they are able to graze from 2 weeks old.

In captivity

Chapman's zebras are often found alongside water bucks, giraffes, and ostriches and other African animals in zoos and wildlife parks. They have been known to live up to 38 years in captivity, opposed to 20–30 in the wild.


  1. Gray, J. E. (1865). "Mr. E. L. Layard on a New Zebra". Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London. 33 (1): 417–422. doi:10.1111/j.1469-7998.1865.tb02359.x.
  2. Equus quagga, IUCN
  3. Pocock, Reginald Innes (July 1897). "The Species and Subspecies of Zebras". Annals and Magazine of Natural History. Ser. 6. Taylor & Francis. XX (115): 43–44. doi:10.1080/00222939708680598.

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