(Metro News) Zebra gives birth to a horse draws crowd at Manila Zoo

August 19, 2010 10:53 am 

MANILA, Aug. 18 — Manila Zoo has a new attraction after a zebra it keeps gave birth to an offspring reportedly sired by a horse.

The reported zebra and horse interbreed is the first of its kind, attracting visitors to the zoo situated in the concrete midst of Manila.

Mayor Alfredo S. Lim, along with chief of staff and media bureau chief Ric de Guzman, launched on Wednesday a city-wide contest to name the baby animal.

Parks and recreation bureau chief Deng Manimbo was tapped to help draft the mechanics of the city-wide contest.

The zebra’s offspring is her third but lost two others much earlier, Manimbo said, adding that the father of the newborn animal is actually an outcast from a group of horses.

Since he was the smallest and a twerp habitually being bullied by other horses, the management of the zoo decided to separate father horse from the stable of his species.

He was placed in a cage where the zebra is housed by her lonesome.

In a rather rare and bizarre partnership that evolved, the horse and the zebra eventually became the odd hooved couple until their togetherness bore two offspring who unfortunately perished much earlier even before they could manage to squeeze out of mother zebra's womb.

But a third offspring much later survived following its birth just two weeks ago, and appears to be in the pink of health, weighing in at 20 pounds.

“This also goes to prove that everything is possible and unexpected things can happen at any given time,” Lim remarked.

Lim personally went to the zoo to see for himself the rare result of zebra and horse interbreed.

The baby animal standing at about three and half feet tall looks like a horse, except that it had a few thin, black stripes on its hind legs and neck.

Manimbo’s assistant head Agerico Sebastian said the newborn will be placed under guarded condition for a month.

It is being fed with fresh cow’s milk mixed with a little syrup. “The baby is being monitored. Whether or not he is already stable will be known only after a month,” Manimbo pointed out.

He added the horse who sired the baby animal had been temporarily transferred to the horses’ stable to allow the zebra and her newborn to bond.

Its gender remains unknown as zoo keepers found it difficult, even dangerous, to go near the doting zebra mother because anyone who goes too close for comfort are reportedly being chased and kicked by mother zebra. (PNA) V3/JES


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