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Stripes for Life


Zebras have a distinctive black and white pattern, you would think this makes them highly visible but the stripes actually act as camouflage. The wavy lines on the zebra act to break up the shape of the animal, making it blend in the background. The fact that the colour isn’t the same as the grass doesn’t matter, the zebra’s chief predator is the lion and it is colour-blind.

For the lion a zebra standing still is almost invisible. When it is running with other zebras, the pattern confuses the lion making the zebra difficult to separate from the group. The pattern on every zebra is unique, like a fingerprint, there are no two the same. Baby zebra’s can recognise their mother’s pattern so they can stay close to her at all times.

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