Chicago Zoo Welcomes Adorable Endangered Zebra Foal: 'It's Hard Not to Smile'
The Lincoln Park Zoo is adding another striped sweetheart to its zebra habitat!
On Tuesday, the Chicago-based zoo announced the arrival of a Grevy zebra foul born on August 14 to Adia, a 13-year-old zebra.
Adia was paired with the foal's father, 9-year-old Wester, as part of the Grevy's Zebra Species Survival Plan, the zoo stated in a press release.
The unnamed foul was born after Adia's gestation period, which lasted over a year. The zoo shared that the foul is in healthy condition and will continue to nurse for about 275 days.
The newborn has reddish-brown stripes which will eventually turn black. Twenty minutes after the birth, the foul was already able to walk — an important survival adaptation for the endangered species.
The foul is Adia's fourth offspring and her second with Wester. The animal joins three other zebras at the zoo's Camel & Zebra Area.
"It’s hard not to smile when seeing this energetic foal," curator Dan Boehm said in the release. "Not only is the zebra foal a joy to visit, but its birth is significant for this endangered species."
According to the release, the Grevy zebra is endangered due to hunting and habitat loss.
The species — named by a French naturalist after France's fourth president — is the largest of the three zebra species.
Grevy zebras inhabit semi-arid grasslands in northern Kenya and southern Ethiopia and are currently the world's largest equine.
The Lincoln Park Zoo is currently open every day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. by reservation only.