How Much Do Zebras Weigh?


The weight of a zebra depends on the animal's species, sex and age. The plains or Burchell's zebra, the most common species, can weigh up to 849 pounds (385 kilograms). This makes zebras somewhat smaller than an average saddle horse but larger than wild asses such as the onager.

The mountain zebra can weigh up to 814 pounds (370 kilograms), while the largest of the zebras, the Grevy's zebra, can weigh up to 990 pounds (450 kilograms). Mountain zebras and plains zebras are somewhat smaller. Zebras are closely related to both horses and donkeys (asses). As in horses, stallions (adult males) are usually larger and heavier than mares (adult females).

A zebra is 3.5 to 5 feet tall at the shoulder, according to National Geographic. In the wild, zebras live about 25 years.

The most distinctive feature of a zebra is the stripes. While scientists are unsure as to why zebras have stripes, they believe the stripes help to camouflage the animals from predators. Other theories hold that the stripes help zebras recognize each other, or they help keep insects at bay who are looking for large pieces of solid-colored fur. The stripes may also act as a type of sunscreen. Each zebra's stripes are unique, with no two being alike in every way.