There’s a new baby zebra at the zoo and she needs a name

The Zoo’s newest baby zebra was born on Monday, 13, 2019 at the Virginia Zoo. (Southside Daily/courtesy of the Virginia Zoo)
The Zoo’s newest baby zebra was born on Monday, 13, 2019 at the Virginia Zoo. (Southside Daily/courtesy of the Virginia Zoo)

NORFOLK — The Virginia Zoo welcomed a new baby zebra on Monday, the fifth filly for 17-year-old Hartmann’s mountain zebra, Abby and fourth for father, 8-year-old, Zack.

Zoo keepers are looking for a name that starts with the letter “Z” after her dad who left the Virginia Zoo for breeding at another zoological facility in late 2018, zoo officials said.

“The foal weighed 80 pounds and stands approximately three feet tall,” said Colleen Clabbers, the zoo’s veterinarian. “We were lucky to have one last filly before Zack left last year. Abby is an experienced mother and she is already taking great care of her baby.”

Female zebras produce a single foal every 1-to-3 years, after a gestation of approximately 1 year, zoo officials said.

The foal will stay close to her mother for 8 to 12 months before being weaned.

To help name the baby, Keepers have narrowed it down to five “Z” names: Zelda, Zeta, Zambezi, Zenith, Zephyra.

Cast your vote here.

The contest will end on Sunday (May 19) at midnight and the name will be announced the following Monday on Facebook.

This is a significant birth for the species as Hartmann’s mountain zebras are threatened in the wild and there are just over 100 individuals in the North American zoos as part of the Association of Zoo and Aquarium’s Species Survival Plan, zoo officials said.

The Zoo’s newest baby zebra was born on Monday, 13, 2019 at the Virginia Zoo. (Southside Daily/courtesy of the Virginia Zoo)
The Zoo’s newest baby zebra was born on Monday, 13, 2019 at the Virginia Zoo. (Southside Daily/courtesy of the Virginia Zoo)

The zoo currently has an all-female herd, with a total of five zebras: Abby, 14-year-old Rose, 3-year-old Ruuxa, 1-year-old Athena and the new foal.

Both mom and baby are behind the scenes to bond and acclimate to the new surroundings but should be gradually introduced to the exhibit in the coming weeks, zoo officials said.

Always be informed. Get the latest news and information delivered to your inbox

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
SHARE
Previous articleInternational learn to swim day is coming up. Here’s what you need to know
Next articleThese two mothers lost their daughters to suicide. They now run support groups
John Mangalonzo (john@localvoicemedia.com) is the managing editor of Local Voice Media’s Virginia papers – WYDaily (Williamsburg), Southside Daily (Virginia Beach) and HNNDaily (Hampton-Newport News). Before coming to Local Voice, John was the senior content editor of The Bellingham Herald, a McClatchy newspaper in Washington state. Previously, he served as city editor/content strategist for USA Today Network newsrooms in St. George and Cedar City, Utah. John started his professional journalism career shortly after graduating from Lyceum of The Philippines University in 1990. As a rookie reporter for a national newspaper in Manila that year, John was assigned to cover four of the most dangerous cities in Metro Manila. Later that year, John was transferred to cover the Philippine National Police and Armed Forces of the Philippines. He spent the latter part of 1990 to early 1992 embedded with troopers in the southern Philippines as they fought with communist rebels and Muslim extremists. His U.S. journalism career includes reporting and editing stints for newspapers and other media outlets in New York City, California, Texas, Iowa, Utah, Colorado and Washington state.