Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Help Support EcoWatch

Researchers Discover African Zebras Log World's Longest-Known Terrestrial Migration

Researchers Discover African Zebras Log World's Longest-Known Terrestrial Migration

Scientists have just discovered the longest-known terrestrial migration of wildlife in Africa—up to several thousand zebra traveling a distance of more than 300 miles (500 km)—according to World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

Equus burchelli Burchell's zebra migration on the plains with a thunderstorm in the background. Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya. © Martin Harvey / WWF-Canon

Using GPS collars on eight adult zebras, WWF and collaborators, including Elephants Without Borders, tracked two consecutive years of movement by the herds—from the Chobe River in Namibia to Botswana’s Nxai Pan National Park and back, a straight-line distance of 250 km. The findings are detailed in a new study published in the journal Oryx.

Physical barriers such as conservation fences have imperiled migrations of a diverse range of species in other parts of Africa and around the world.

“This unexpected discovery of endurance in an age dominated by humans, where we think we know most everything about the natural world, underscores the importance of continued science and research for conservation” said Dr. Robin Naidoo, senior conservation scientist at WWF.

Equus burchelli Burchell's zebra On alert as they watch lions. Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya. © Martin Harvey / WWF-Canon

“At a time when conservation news is inherently rather negative, the discovery of this unknown natural phenomenon should resonate with people around the world,” said Dr. Mike Chase, Elephants Without Border’s founder. “The government’s commitment to secure key migratory corridors serves to underpin the growing wildlife tourism industry. We plan to continue monitoring the migration to try and conserve such increasingly rare natural events.”

Continued long-term research will be needed to confirm that this is an annual and fixed migration, says WWF, as well as whether this is genetically coded or behavior passed from mothers to offspring.

--------

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Species Are Going Extinct 1,000 Time Faster Because of Humans

Top 10 New Species for 2014

Loss of Large Wildlife Leads to Increased Disease Risk in Humans

--------

Residents get in a car after leaving their homes to move to evacuation centers in central Vietnam's Quang Nam province on Oct. 27, 2020, ahead of Typhoon Molave's expected landfall. MANAN VATSYAYANA / AFP via Getty Images

Typhoon Molave is expected to make landfall in Vietnam on Wednesday with 90 mph winds and heavy rainfall that could lead to flooding and landslides, according to the U.S. Embassy and U.S. Consulate in Ho Chi Minh City. To prepare for the powerful storm that already tore through the Philippines, Vietnam is making plans to evacuate nearly 1.3 million people along the central coast, as Reuters reported.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Chipotle's "Real Foodprint" will tell you the ecological footprint of each menu item compared to the industry standard. Joe Raedle / Getty Images

How does your burrito impact the environment? If you ordered it from Chipotle, there is now a way to find out.

Read More Show Less

Trending

Are you noticing your shirts becoming too tight fitting to wear? Have you been regularly visiting a gym, yet it seems like your effort is not enough? It's okay to get disappointed, but not to lose hope.

Read More Show Less
Locals check out the new stretch of artificial beach in Manila Bay, Philippines on Sept, 19, 2020. patrickroque01 / Wikimedia Commons / CC by 4.0

By Sarah Steffen

A stretch of coastline in the Philippine capital, Manila has received backlash from environmentalists. The heavily polluted Manila Bay area, which had been slated for cleanup, has become the site of a controversial 500-meter (1,600-foot) stretch of white sand beach.

Read More Show Less
An illustration highlights the moon's Clavius Crater with an illustration depicting water trapped in the lunar soil there. NASA / Daniel Rutter

A pair of studies released Monday confirmed not only the presence of water and ice on the moon, but that it is more abundant than scientists previously thought. Those twin discoveries boost the prospect of a sustainable lunar base that could harvest the moon's resources to help sustain itself, according to the BBC.

Read More Show Less

Support Ecowatch