Zonkey - Hearty Equine Crossbreed
The zonkey is a sterile creature, the hybrid offspring created by crossbreeding two different species of animal with similar genes: the male zebra and the female donkey. It shares mostly the same characteristics with its donkey family side, particularly its behavior, size, large ears and head. It may have a tan, gray and brown colored coat with lighter color on the undersides, belly and legs. On the legs, most individuals have their most prominent and darkest stripes while some also have stripes on their sides. They also have a black or mixed-colored mane running along their backs to the tail.
Although often found in a domesticated setting, some consider the zonkey a wild animal with a more aggressive nature. There are still herds of wild donkeys living in northern Africa (although there are only a few) so the breeding of wild zonkeys can still happen in the wild. It is a powerful, hearty creature with the stamina of a donkey and strength and speed of the zebra. This is why it is used as a working animal that pulls heavier loads.
Survival shouldn't be too much of an issue for the zonkey, as long as there is grass to eat and no ferocious predators like lions, leopards, cheetahs and hyenas. The zonkey is an herbivorous type of animal that is able to survive on its diet composed of a plant substances: herbs and grasses, just like any equine. Its broad and flat teeth are useful in grinding down the grass. What it likes best is browsing for many different types of food such as berries and fruits. These are mostly found in less arid regions. In the wilderness of Africa it faces competition for water and food from other kinds of animals so it is always on the move looking for better, greener pastures.
After a gestation period that lasts about a year, the female zebra gives birth to the foal zonkey that stands up right after birth. It remains with its mother until about 5 to 6 months until it becomes completely independent after these months and can join other herds in the wild or remain in the domestic pasture.