On Monday, photos of an uncommon zebra foal went viral on social media.
The newborn was spotted with its mother while grazing in the Mara.
A melanistic zebra is one whose stripes haven’t developed correctly, leaving its coat patched black with white stripes and spots.
It’s not fully black like most melanistic animals rather it looks more like the stripes arose mid-body and were trying to migrate out to the head and feet but the patterns failed to fully appear on its coat.
Due to their unusual coat colour they do not survive long in the wild because they are an easy target for predators.
It is a small genetic abnormality linked to the amount of melanin affecting the pigmentation of the fur.
The young foal running around with its mother was such a sight to behold that it almost brought the park to a stand still with crowds gathering to take photographs and document it.
This is not the first time this abnormality is witnessed in Africa.
In 2012, a similar foal was born in the Okavango region of Southern Africa but it only survived for six months before it was taken down by hyenas.
Scientists claim that zebras stripes are formed from the inhibition of melanin and that the “default” colour of a zebra is black.
A zebra is black with white stripes.
It can only be hoped that the foal survive long enough and continue to attract visitors to the park to have a glimpse of this rare kind.
Unfortunately in the Natural world, if you stand-out, you are easily a target.
Via The Star