Fun Quagga Facts For Kids

Oluniyi Akande
Nov 17, 2022 By Oluniyi Akande
Originally Published on Aug 05, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
Fact-checked by Smriti Chaudhary
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Here are quagga facts for you to read and learn.

As per quagga definition, the quagga, scientific name Equus quagga quagga, was a subspecies of the plains zebras like the Burchell's zebra. Earlier it was believe that quagga was a separate species rather then being a sub-species of the plains zebra, but studies proved otherwise.

Quagga was hunted to extinction in the 19th century by the European settler-colonists. The species went extinct almost 100 years ago.

Now, scientists in South Africa are working on the quagga project which aims to bring these South African mammals back from extinction.

The appearance of the quagga is closely related to that of a zebra and has stripes on their head and neck. One of the features that make quaggas different from zebras is its limited pattern of primarily brown and white stripes.

Quaggas were believed to be wild and lively as compared to the other species of zebras. This sub-species of plains zebra was found in large numbers. This sub-species of plains zebra was discovered in the Karoo of Cape Province.

Other areas included the southern part of the Orange Free State in South Africa. The main reason for extensively hunting the quagga was it competed with the domesticated animals for forage. You may also check out plains zebra facts and Sumatran elephant facts.

Quagga Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a quagga?

The quagga (Equus quagga quagga) is closely related to the plains zebra and went extinct over 100 years ago. The appearance of the quagga is similar to that of a plains zebra, and their population was mainly concentrated around South Africa. Like plains zebra, these animals used to live in a herd, like other plains zebra sub-species.

What class of animal does a quagga belong to?

Quaggas belong to the class of mammals. The species of the quaggas went extinct because of extensive hunting. Before the quagga extinction, the population of this sub-species could be found in South Africa. Instead of being a separate species, it is a subspecies of the plains zebra.

How many quaggas are there in the world?

The quaggas, subspecies of the plains zebra, have become extinct now as the selective breeding programs also failed. The last known wild population of the quaggas was seen in the year 1878.

The last quagga died in Amsterdam on 12 August 1883 after which the quagga animal became officially extinct. Various quagga projects are being organized in South Africa to bring change the quagga extinct status and reintroduce the quagga zebra populations into the wilderness.

Where does a quagga live?

Quaggas lived in freshwater, rivers, lakes, reservoirs, and brackish water habitats. They were found in these areas due to the availability of their food. Quagga was endemic to southern Africa as this sub-species was closely related to the plains zebra and they used to live as a part of a herd.

What is a quagga's habitat?

The quagga habitat was that of arid to the temperate grasslands and occasionally wetter pastures. The habitat of the quagga was in the grasslands of Southern Africa.

Who do quaggas live with?

The quaggas used to live in a herd with the other species of zebras and the other quaggas. Even if one of the quagga from the herd used to disappear, the male quagga would start hunting for the quagga.

How long does a quagga live?

The lifespan of the quagga is estimated to be around 40 years. The lifespan of the quaggas was dependent on different factors such as environmental changes, surroundings, nutrition, and other factors.

How do they reproduce?

The reproduction of the quaggas used to happen by mating between males and females. When the males and females mate with each other, they produce an offspring. The gestation period was around one year and the female gave birth to only one foal per litter.

What is their conservation status?

The conservation status of the quagga (Equus quagga quagga) is extinct as the quaggas went extinct almost 100 years ago. This plain zebra subspecies became extinct because of excessive hunting by humans to clear foraging grounds for domesticated animals.

The last known quagga died in an Amsterdam zoo in 1883, and since then, there are no quaggas in the world. But now scientists in South Africa are planning to the bring this animal back from extinction through the quagga project.

These scientists are undertaking selective breeding under this quagga project for creating a breeding lineage of Burchell's zebra.

Scientists hope that this new animal will resemble quagga in terms of appearance, marking the success of quagga project in restoring this extinct species. These scientists believe that as these new creatures will be capable of independent breeding, they would be able to sustain in the wild by themselves.

Quagga Fun Facts

What do quaggas look like?

The quagga (Equus quagga quagga) is an animal that comes under the subspecies of zebras. They look similar to plains zebras in appearance. The quaggas have stripes that appear on the front half of their bodies.

They are brown along the rear half of the body. People used to misunderstand quaggas for plains zebras. As the species is extinct, there are no quaggas that people can look at now.

A quagga resembles a zebra.

How cute are they?

Quaggas were cute as they looked like zebras in appearance. Though the species went extinct in the 19th century, quaggas were liked by people as they looked like zebras. As they were wild animals, they looked cute from far away.

How do they communicate?

The quaggas mode of communication was the use of facial expressions and body movements. If they had to communicate anything to anyone then they used facial expression or the body movement so as to convey their message to another one. They used to communicate by using different sounds such as (kwa-ka-ka) (qua-ga-ga).

How big is a quagga?

The quaggas were big in size as they were similar to zebras. The quagga was around 8.5 ft long and 3.9-4.6 ft tall at the shoulder. They were not much bigger as compared to the other species of animals.

How fast can a quagga run?

The quagga could run at a speed of around 40 mph. Some might even try to run faster. The quaggas used to run swiftly whenever they used to see a predator approaching them.

How much does a quagga weigh?

The approximate weight of a quagga was pegged at around 880-900 lb. The weight of a quagga used to differ according to their nutrition that was needed for their body.

What are their male and female names of the species?

There is no specific name for the species and they were known as male quagga and female quagga respectively. The female species were slightly longer and taller as compared to the male species and also the coat pattern was different as compared to the other species.

What would you call a baby quagga?

A baby quagga is called a foal. The female gives birth to an offspring once a year. Therefore, the baby quagga is known as a foal. A baby foal is born after 12 months, as the gestation period of a quagga is 01 year.

What do they eat?

Quaggas are herbivores as their vegetation includes grass. They did not prey on other animals to get an adequate amount of food. They were plant-eaters and only ate grasses. They spent most of their time gazing for food. They used to feed on grasses rather than scrubs or fruits, or any other form of food.

Are they friendly?

Yes, quaggas were friendly in nature. One used to love the quagga for its nature and behaved very politely with other people. They used to get along well with their other group of quaggas. Though they were wild animals, they were normally friendly with other quaggas and zebras.

Would they make a good pet?

Quaggas were never a good pet as they were wild animals. As they were wild animals, nobody ever thought of getting a quagga as a pet in their home. Getting a quagga as a pet would increase their expenses as they were wild animals.

Did you know...

The quaggas were hunted by human beings for their meat and hides while they still lived. The quaggas didn’t breed in captivity, and also worked in small tasks that were similar to that of donkeys and horses.

The reason for the death of the wild quaggas was a drought that happened in 1878. The last captive quagga that passed away in Amsterdam Zoo and was placed in the museum.

The quaggas used to live and spend their night time in the short pastures and would keep a watch for the approaching predators. The quaggas had slender legs that helped them escape from the predators.

They used to run at an amazing pace, so chasing them would become difficult for predators. Their legs were known to be very strong as they could kill a creature as large as a lion.

Where did the name quagga come from?

The species were named quagga because of the noise that they made. The species is believed to be separated from the other plain zebras between 130,000 and 300,000 years ago. The quaggas used to make a noise like (kwa-ka-ka) (qua-ga-ga) and that’s how they were named.

When was the quagga's last day on earth?

The last quagga died on 12 August 1883 in the Amsterdam Zoo, and since then, there are no quaggas that are left in the world. The main reason behind quaggas getting extinct was ruthless hunting and even planned extermination.

The quaggas were never taken care of properly and that is the main reason that the species went extinct in a very short period of time.

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 squirrel monkey, or Masai giraffe.

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

*Please note as this animal is extinct, the main image is of a plains zebra, which closely resembles the quagga.

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Written by Oluniyi Akande

Doctorate specializing in Veterinary Medicine

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Oluniyi AkandeDoctorate specializing in Veterinary Medicine

With an accomplished background as a Veterinarian, SEO content writer, and public speaker, Oluniyi brings a wealth of skills and experience to his work. Holding a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the University of Ibadan, he provides exceptional consulting services to pet owners, animal farms, and agricultural establishments. Oluniyi's impressive writing career spans over five years, during which he has produced over 5000 high-quality short- and long-form pieces of content. His versatility shines through as he tackles a diverse array of topics, including pets, real estate, sports, games, technology, landscaping, healthcare, cosmetics, personal loans, debt management, construction, and agriculture.

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Fact-checked by Smriti Chaudhary

Bachelor of Technology specializing in Information Technology

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Smriti ChaudharyBachelor of Technology specializing in Information Technology

Smriti, a student data scientist, and coder, is pursuing her Bachelor of Technology at K.J. Somaiya College of Engineering. She has achieved top rankings in the International English Olympiad, National Spelling Bee, and PSAT/SAT English Section. She is experienced in content creation and editing for various academic institutions.

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