Colchester Zoo in the English country of Essex introduced their latest starlet -- Mary the zedonk -- to a selected audience of cameraman, schoolchildren, camels, tigers and penguins on Tuesday (20 April).
SV Donkey in paddock
SV Zedonk with normal donkeys
SV Flamingos in pond
SV Sign "Zedonk"
SV Zedonk drinking water and eating grass with baby (2 shots)
SCU PULL BACK TO SHOW Zedonk with baby and other normal donkey
Initials BB/1530 GB/PN/BB/1605
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Background: Colchester Zoo in the English country of Essex introduced their latest starlet -- Mary the zedonk -- to a selected audience of cameraman, schoolchildren, camels, tigers and penguins on Tuesday (20 April).
A zedonk is a cross between a donkey and a zebra. It has the body of an ass and legs or a zebra -- four extremely fashionable legs encased in stripes that wouldn't be out of place in the King's Road, Chelsea.
Naturally, Mary is a rare animal. Colchester has two other zedonks -- aged three and five -- and they and Mary are the only creatures of their kind in any Western zoo, and, as far as Colchester officials know, the only Zedonks in the world.
The zedonks many represent a major breakthrough in animal breeding, in that many attempts have been made to bread an animal with the zebra's resistance to disease and parasites and with the horse's capacity for work, for use in Africa.
But in the meantime, Mary and other zedonks seem content to play the ass and amuse the visitors to the zoo.
They're described as rather skittish animals, which is not surprising considering that none of them know who their father is as their mother -- an Arabian donkey -- was mated with two zebras.