Maryland Zoo in Baltimore Bids Farewell to Stalwart Zebra

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Photo by Jeffrey F. Bill, courtesy of the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore

The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore lost an enduring member of its herd yesterday.

Plains zebra Ayanna lived to be 21, six years older than the median life expectancy for most of her same-species peers. She was born at the zoo housed within Druid Hill Park in 1996 and spent her entire life there, said mammal collection and conservation manager Erin Cantwell in a statement.

Cantwell described Ayanna as both confident and adaptable, and said she “always made an impression on the many keepers who worked with her.”

“Ayanna will be greatly missed by everyone here,” she said.

Zoo head veterinarian Ellen Bronson said Ayanna lived into her 20s thanks largely to good care from zoo staff. Unfortunately, both her health and quality of life had recently begun to deteriorate.

“As she declined over the past few weeks, we knew the time had come to humanely euthanize her,” said Bronson in a statement. “She was an exceptional zebra, and the staff worked very diligently with her every day to ensure she lived a full and healthy life here at the Zoo.”

Ayanna is survived by two five-year-old members of her herd named Stella and Phoenix. Both can be seen at the African Watering Hole near the central area of the zoo.

Ethan McLeod
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