Right now, the zoo says he is undergoing a routine quarantine period.
ATLANTA — Zoo Atlanta is welcoming the newest member of its family Tuesday, a 17-year-old zebra named Wembe.
Right now, the zoo says he is undergoing a routine quarantine period, which should last about a month before he is introduced into the African Savanna section of the park.
And because zebras are social creatures, the zoo says they will be welcoming another later this fall, so Wembe will soon have himself a friend.
Together, Wembe and his BFF will have the opportunity to meet other species just as they would in the wild, according to the zoo.
Among those include African Savannah species such as giraffes, bonteboks and ostriches.
“Zoo Atlanta is very excited to welcome Wembe. When we think of the wildlife of the grasslands of sub-Saharan Africa, it’s hard to think of an animal more recognizable or iconic than the zebra,” Vice President of Collections and Conservation Jennifer Mickelberg said. “The plains zebra is one of many species that are not yet classified as endangered, but tell us an important story now of the steps we can take to halt further population declines. These are magnificent animals we want to see forever in abundance in their native savannas.”
In a statement, the zoo said that while zebras were once nearly ubiquitous in the wild in the southern and eastern regions of sub-Saharan Africa, many populations are now in decline.
Plains zebras, such as Wembe are classified as “Near Threatened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).”
The zoo explains that the primary threat to zebras is habitat alteration due to farming, adding that “the increasing prevalence of agriculture in their native range results in competition with domestic livestock for grass resources, and farm fences interrupt zebras’ traditional migration patterns.”
So, if you find yourself at the zoo in the coming months, be sure to swing by the African Savannah section and tell Wembe hello!