Friday, January 25, 2013

Zebra manes & tails

To continue the debate of how to clearly differentiate between the different (sub-)species of zebra [SEE my previous blog entries on this "subject": 21/12/12 & 17/1/13] I'm today posting photos concentrating on the manes & tails of the various zebra species. Slowly I'm beginning to "make peace" with the fact that the variety amongst the Plains zebra is huge!!

Similarly I'm reverting to calling them Burchell's (instead of only Plains) zebra, even if the available info on the internet in this regard is rather confusing - but, afterall, the full (scientific) name for them is Equus burchelli.

A zebra's mane "stands up straight" (> horse's mane lies flat) wheras a zebra (also unlike a horse) has a "solid" tail. The long erect mane runs along the top of the neck - from the ears to above the shoulders - whilst the "neat" striping pattern on the neck extends into the mane.

Another "typical zebra-feature" is a narrow black stripe that runs along the back to the mid-line of the tail & ends in a black whisk, whilst the top of the tail is "flanked" by black bars (+/ black dots) - more clearly visible in the first 2 photos above.

Back to my "favourite group" of zebra drinking thistily - apart from thinking they might be Damara zebra [SEE my previous blog entry as well as 21/12/12 ] - I'm "diverting" from concentrating on the unusually white legs to other, more typical zebra-features: the muzzle, chin & nose are black. I'm also "re-using" a photo of this group because . . .

. . . I wish to concentrate on the zebra-"rear ends" (incidentally: this is also 1 of my favourite zebra-photos) & on what is said to be "zipper-like" in appearance: the stripe that covers the spine & top portion of the tail!!??

However: this zipper-like-effect is supposedly only associated with the Hartmann's (sub-species of the Mountain) zebra, but unfortunately I only have this "side-view"-photo of what I believe are Hartmann's zebra, because I photographed them in the (geological) region where they are said to occur in Namibia.

So instead I'm "using" a photo of a Cape Mountain zebra to "demonstrate" what the zipper-like appearance might look like, although . . .

. . . I used to associate this zipper-like-look with what until recently I thought WERE Hartmann zebra but was "corrected" [SEE: previous blog-entry]. So instead I now think they are the rather "unique" Grant's zebra!?

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