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Cape May County Zoo adds new female zebra to herd 'harem'

Cape May County Zoo adds new female zebra to herd 'harem'

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Cape May County Zoo adds a female zebra to its harem

{child_byline}MICHELLE BRUNETTI POST

Staff Writer

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CAPE MAY COURT HOUSE — A one-and-one-half-year-old female Grant’s zebra is the Cape May County Zoo’s latest resident, zoo officials said Sunday.

Lydia came to the Cape May County Zoo from the Como Park Zoo in Saint Paul, Minnesota, and is joining the herd as an additional harem mate for Ziggy — the zoo’s only stallion.

She is the fourth female to join the herd, with Gretta, Gracie and Zuri.

The zoos said zebras are social animals with smaller harems consisting of one stallion, a few mares and their offspring.

The smallest of the seven subspecies of African Plains Zebra, Grant’s zebras are facing population declines because of habitat loss and civil war, according to the zoo.

In zoos, they live about 40 years, and in the wild up to 20 years.

“Lydia’s arrival at the Cape May County Zoo is part of the Species Survival Program (SSP), and her breeding success will be a small but crucial contribution to the future of her species,” said Dr. Alex Ernst, associate veterinarian.

Lydia and the herd are located in the savanna area of the zoo, which covers approximately 57 acres accessible to visitors by a raised boardwalk.

Grant’s zebras can weigh between 485 and 700 pounds, with a shoulder height of 4 to 4.5 feet. Zebras have excellent eyesight and hearing and can run up to 40 mph. It is believed that they can see in color.

“This is just one of the programs the zoo is involved in,” said E. Marie Hayes, liaison to the Cape May County Park and Zoo.

The Cape May County Zoo is open daily from 10 am until 3:30 p.m. during the winter months, and the surrounding park is open daily from 7 a.m. until dusk.

Masks are required and social-distancing protocols must be followed for the safety of visitors, staff and the animals.

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Contact Michelle Brunetti Post:

609-272-7219

mpost@pressofac.com

Twitter @MichelleBPost

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Staff Writer

In my first job after college got paid to read the New York Times and summarize articles for an early online data base. First reporting job was with The Daily Record in Parsippany. I have also worked in nonprofits, and have been with The Press since 1990.

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