Zebras are several species of African equids (horse family) united by their distinctive black and white stripes. Their stripes come in different patterns, unique to each individual. Unlike their closest relatives, horses and donkeys, zebras have never been truly domesticated.
The unique stripes of zebras make them one of the animals most familiar to people.
They occur in a variety of habitats. However, various factors have had a severe impact on zebra populations, in particular hunting for skins and habitat destruction.
Like most members of the horse family, zebras are highly social. Their social structure, however, depends on the species.
Mountain zebras and plains zebras live in groups, known as 'harems', consisting of one stallion with up to six mares and their foals. Bachelor males either live alone or with groups of other bachelors until they are old enough to challenge a breeding stallion.
When attacked by packs of hyenas or wild dogs a zebra group will huddle together with the foals in the middle while the stallion tries to ward them off.
Like horses, zebras sleep standing up, and only sleep when neighbors are around to warn them of predators.