Zonkeys, the babies of mama zebra and daddy donkey, are extremely rare in the wild, as these species don't usually show interest in each other. But love is so unpredictable. That's what makes it so great!
Last spring in Kenya's East Tsavo National Park one of the zebras strayed from the herd. Wandering the woods, she came across a local farm, and decided to stay there for a while. The zebra joined the local cattle herd and spent a few weeks with them. Then the volunteers from the local animal welfare organization arrived at the farm to move the animal back to her herd.
The zebra seemed happy to be back in the wild, but soon locals spotted her again near the farm. And one day she came there not alone, but with a foal! Her baby looked very unusual!
Zebras usually give birth to babies with white and brown stripes which later turn into the usual black and white pattern. But this foal had stripes only on his legs. Moreover, he didn't look like his mother at all, but he resembled another animal – a donkey!
According to the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, the frivolous zebra had an affair while living on the farm, and was already pregnant by the time she was transported back. This also is suggested by the fact that she continued to visit the village even after the living the farm.
Despite the different species of daddy and mommy, their "love child" looks quite healthy. It is not yet known how the zonkey will be received by other zebras if the mother decides to return to her herd, but everyone on the farm treats him very well.
The unusual baby has become a local landmark. Even people from neighboring villages come to the farm since everyone wants to look at this miracle and take a photo with it. The zebra and her baby zonkey continue to live nearby. Something keeps the mother zebra from leaving the farm and returning to the wild. May it be love?
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