Five Zebras Are Roaming the Suburbs of Maryland

And they have been since August

If you're outside in Maryland and see this, you may have found a zebra.
Stephane YAICH/Unsplash

How hard is it to find a zebra in a suburb? No, that’s not the start of a surreal joke or a philosophical riddle. For some scientists in the mid-Atlantic region, it describes an ongoing concern after a quintet of zebras went missing earlier this year. And, yes — zebras should probably not be this difficult to find, which is what makes this situation so bizarre to many observers.

Writing at The Guardian, Adam Gabbatt has more details on the missing zebras and the search to recover them. As Gabbatt writes, the zebras have become a hot conversational topic in the town of Upper Marlboro, Maryland — with some residents recording images of the zebras walking around outdoors in unexpected places.

The zebras got loose from a farm in the area in August. As The Washington Post reported at the time, the five zebras who escaped were part of a much larger herd, comprising 31 in total. The Post‘s report also notes that, of the five, three seem to stick together, with another two traveling separately.

As for why it’s been so difficult to retrieve the zebras, that comes down to one essential fact: zebras are really, really fast. If you’ve ever watched a lion chase a zebra on a nature show, you have a sense of what zebras have to deal with in the wild — and if you’ve evolved to avoid being eaten by a lion, you can probably evade some humans without much trouble.

As The Guardian reports, the locals around where the zebras escaped in Maryland are relatively calm about the whole thing. In the midst of a strange time everywhere, the possibility of seeing a zebra roaming wild might just make for a moment of unqualified delight.

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