Zebra Gives Birth to Rare Baby Zonkey

Credit: Sheldrick Wildlife Trust

Baby donkeys and zebras are cute, but have you ever laid eyes on a baby zonkey?

The Chyulu Hills National Park in Kenya noticed that there was a peculiar-looking zebra foal that had stripes, but they weren’t dark and barely covered the body of the foal.

Caregivers at the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, an animal rescue and rehabilitation organization, examined the foal and soon discovered that it wasn’t a zebra but actually a zonkey, a zebra-donkey hybrid.

The zonkey is a combination of the donkey’s sturdy body and the striped legs of a zebra. While it will be able to lead a normal life, zonkeys are mules, according to the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, meaning that upon reaching maturity, the zonkey will be unable to breed.

Credit: @sheldricktrust via Twitter

The mother zebra is a stray that made her way into Kenya’s Tsavo East National Park and “made herelf at home” with a community of cattle, according to the rescue group. Mama zebra was later transferred to Chyulu Hills National Park by the group for care.

Zebra pregnancies last for 12 months, so the group was able to track how mama zebra came to have her baby. During her time with the cattle herd last year, the group said that she became “acquainted with an amorous donkey.”

Mother zebra and her baby zonkey are currently living their best life in their new habitat safe and sound from predators.

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