How Long Do Zebras Live?

Zebra Grazing.jpgThe answer to how long zebras live is circumstantial. It depends on their environment, food diet, and health. Even though they are part of the horse family, their habits and social organization affects their life span.

Life Span in Captivity

Zebras can often be seen in zoos and most of them have no reproductive problems while in captivity. They also outlive their counterparts from the wild due to several factors. In captivity, zebras have the luxury of benefiting from healthcare provided by the keepers.

Also, food scarcity becomes a non-existent problem. Predators as well are out of the question. These three factors lead to an extended life span which can be as high as 40 years.

Caring for Zebras

On the other hand, zebras require very little care. They rarely get sick in captivity and can eat almost anything. They are safe from parasites and predators that would shorten their lifespan.

The only problem that zebras have in captivity is the fact that they are aggressive. When they require medical attention, they are much more difficult to deal with than horses and tranquilizers are used whenever they are injured or sick.

Lifespan in The Wild

In their natural habitat, zebras can live up to 25 years. This number can vary depending on food scarcity and predators. Also, they can be affected by various diseases that shorten their lifespan.

In some cases, they can even live up to 30 years. However, the real number is much lower than that. The average lifespan of a zebra is about nine years in the wild. This number is seemingly low because of predators and the fact that 50% of the foals die in their first year.

Also, water can be contaminated by parasites and they can contact various diseases that would require medical attention. In is quite common to see zebras with infected wounds that can incapacitate them and turn them into vulnerable targets for predators.