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Kidadl Team

AUGUST 05, 2021

Zorse Facts You’ll Never Forget

Find interesting Zorse facts for kids here

Animal hybrids may seem out of this world, but they are real! One such unbelievable hybrid is a zorse, a cross between a zebra stallion and a horse mare. It can also be called a zebrule, zebrula, or zebra mule. A zorse falls under the zebroid category, a term used when a zebra mates with other equines like a donkey or horse.

A zorse is said to have developed first in parts of Europe and Asia. Today, it is most commonly found in Southern and Eastern Africa in grasslands and savannahs, which are tropical and subtropical regions with grass. The zorse can also be found in parts of North America. The animal predominantly gets its appearance and temperament from its mother (horse mare). They are well built and look handsomely athletic with brown, black, white, red, or tan-colored fur with striking zebra-like stripes all over the body.

Zorses' breeding is done in circuses, zoos, and places where there are human breeders near wild grasslands. This is because the hybrid animal is the result of mating a wild zebra and a domestic horse.

If you like these  fun facts about zorse animals, you can also check out these guides to Przewalski's horse and the Sri Lankan elephant.

Zorse Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a Zorse?

The cross between a zebra stallion and a horse mare is called a zorse, and in rare reverse cases, mating between a zebra mare and horse stallion is called a zebrinny, zebret, zebra hinny, or hebra.

What class of animal does a Zorse belong to?

Just like zebras and horses, zorses belong to the Mammalia class.

How many Zorses are there in the world?

There are only about 100 zorses in the world. The number is low due to their infertility and because zebras are wild animals, whereas horses are domesticated. Hence, there are not many zorse breeders in the world. They are primarily bred to be exhibited in zoos.

Where does a Zorse live?

Being related to horses, zorses are herbivores. They suit life in grasslands, woodlands, and places with greenery, fruits, and berries because that is their primary source of food. They are found in Africa and in zoos across the world.

What is a Zorse's habitat?

Horses are primarily domesticated animals, whereas zebras are found in the wild or zoos. As zebras and horses' offsprings, it is nearly impossible for zorses to be found in the wild. They are usually found in zoos and animal institutes. A zorse can also exist in places where there are human settlements, as a scion of a wild zebra and domestic horse. Commercial breeding and loss of habitat are the primary threats to zorses.

Who do Zorses live with?

Like horses and zebras, zorses are social animals and have heightened flight responses. They can live with other animals in zoos and circuses and are reasonably friendly with humans.

How long does a Zorse live?

A zorse's average lifespan is between 15 to 30 years. However, they can live for more than 30 years if they are well maintained and looked after.

How do they reproduce?

Typically, hybrids that are a cross between two kinds of animals of the same family or other families are sterile. Therefore, like other hybrids, zorses also are sterile and cannot reproduce.

What is their conservation status?

The conservation status of the zorse is not listed in the International Unit of Conservation of Nature (IUCN) List. This is because the zorse is a hybrid animal and is infertile.

Zorse ​Fun Facts

What do Zorses look like?

Discover zorse and hebra facts for animal lovers.

The offspring of a zebra and horse is called a zorse. Zorses are handsome creatures like their parents. Zebroids or zorses look muscular, well built, and share many other horse mare features. They have bold stripes on the legs, neck, and hind and lighter stripes on the rest of their body. They have short, rough fur like a horse in colors like brown, tan, black. With dark black eyes, ears sitting erect on the head, and beautiful hair on the neck. Unlike either of the parents, zorses have a muzzle. With long, slender, and sturdy legs, they can easily maintain a firm stance which also helps them run.

How cute are they?

A zorse is a handsome and cute animal. Since they are a crossbreed between a horse and zebra, they are beautiful with stripes in black and white colors, or red, tan, brown, and general horse-like colors. A baby zorse, also known as a foal, is extra adorable!

How do they communicate?

Zorses communicate through verbal and nonverbal means. Humans can communicate with zorses through touch by caressing them with the hand. They swish their tails, make noises, and can sense danger. Zorses have a good fight or flight response, so they clearly understand the difference between a good and bad touch.

How big is a Zorse?

Zorses have a horse-like build and are often quite stocky. They will grow to 51-65 in (130-163 cm) tall and weigh anything between 500-992 lb (227-450 kg), but they are typically shorter than horses.

How fast can a Zorse run?

Horses are impressively fast animals and can run at up to 88 km per hour. Not quite as fast as a horse, a zorse can run at 64 km per hour, but this is still super fast. It is one reason why breeders like to use zorses as working animals to transport people and goods, especially at tourist destinations.

How much does a Zorse weigh?

A zorse typically weighs between 500-992 lb (227-450 kg).

What are their male and female names of the species?

Since a zorse is a zebra and horse hybrid, it does not have male and female species names.

What would you call a baby Zorse?

After mating happens between a zebra and a horse, the female horse goes through an 11 month gestation period, and a baby zorse called a foal is born. After the birth within an hour, the zorse can stand up and begins to canter.

What do they eat?

Like their parent animals, a zorse is a herbivore and feeds on grass, fruits, leaves, berries, and other greens and grains found on the ground level. They have a nose for what can be eaten and easily avoid poisonous plants.

Are they dangerous?

Zorses have a social and robust temperament like zebras. They can get aggressive but are not dangerous until triggered the wrong way.

Would they make a good pet?

Zorses cannot be kept as a pet but can definitely be used for domestic transportation of people and goods. They are friendly animals and are most likely to be found in zoos.

Did you know...

Here are some mind-blowing zorse facts for you:

Zorses, like zebras, have 360-degree vision with two blind-spots: exactly in front of their nose and behind the head. They are also said to have excellent night vision.

They are mentioned in books, including 'A Song Of Ice And Fire' by George R.R. Martin.

Being an offspring of a zebra, a zorse needs a friend or life-long companion.

The US government bred zorses in the 20th century to determine the qualities inherited by their parents, the zebra and horse.

As an offspring of a zebra, the zorse also has unique stripes like fingerprints. Meaning, no zorse or zebra can have the same pattern of stripes.

A zorses' digestive system flows throughout the body, and they can eat all day long!

Like zebras, zorses are naturally resistant to a disease spread by the Tse Tse fly in Africa.

Zorses can be expensive to purchase. A wild zorse can cost $500, but it will be untamed and does not trust people easily. Such a zorse can be challenging to train. A well-trained and bred zorse can cost up to $30,000. What do you think, are they worth the price?

Can The Zorse Reproduce?

Zorse, also referred to as zebroids, cannot reproduce even though they have the ability to mate. Horses have 64 chromosomes, and various zebras species have between 32 to 44 chromosomes. When the two mate, zebroids are born with 54 chromosomes. They are born sterile, so cannot reproduce with a horse, zorse, zebra, or any other animal.

More Zebroid Variations

Like zorses, there are many zebroid variations that are produced when zebras mate with other equines like horses and donkeys. Natural breeding of an equine hybrid is nearly impossible. Like the zorse, here are some other hybrids you may want to know about.

The zony is a hybrid resulting from the mating of a zebra and pony. Ponies are a smaller breed of horse and can look much smaller than a horse even after being fully grown. The animal has more features of a pony mare and stripes of a zebra stallion. When a zebra mates with a Shetland (Scottish pony breed), they are called Zetlands.

The offspring of a zebra and donkey is generally called a zonkey or zenkey. This hybrid's breed is super popular for tourists to pose with in souvenir photographs. Zonkeys also have stripes and can found in a few parts of Africa and live in green pastures. Having solid and broad teeth like donkeys, they can easily chew on fibrous grasses. Zonkeys, being related to zebras and donkeys, share the power, speed, and strength of their parent animals and are used for pulling heavy loads. They have a lifespan of 15 to 25 years.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other mammals including the pademelon, or the Javan rhinoceros.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one on our Zorse coloring pages.

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