Why are Zebra stripes black and white but the terrain in Africa isn’t?

Would you believe that they can hide behind picket fences? We didn’t think you would, but it was worth the try.

The stripes on a zebra make it quite camouflaged, even in its desert environment. The predators that prey on it, —lions, hyenas, leopards, and cheetahs— don’t see the same colors we do; the black and white creates a “disruptive discoloration.”

That means that the black stripes break up the outline of the animal, preventing many predators from being able to see the zebra clearly, if at all.

This is especially true during the low-light times of day when many of their natural enemies hunt.

About Karen Hill

Karen Hill is a freelance writer, editor, and columnist. Born in New York, her work has appeared in the Examiner, Yahoo News, Buzzfeed, among others.

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