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Serengeti Symbiosis
Photo by John Harrison

In Tanzania, amidst the sweeping landscapes of Serengeti National Park, I embarked on a remarkable adventure. Amidst a herd of graceful zebras grazing on the golden grasslands, a tiny oxpecker caught my eye. Perched on a zebra's back, it diligently combed through the stripes, seeking out ticks and parasites. The zebras stood still, as if appreciating the bird's help. This unique bond showcased nature's harmony and the interdependence between species. It left a lasting impression, a reminder of Tanzania's interconnected beauty and the wonders of cooperation in the wild.

Zebras in Tanzania are a prominent and iconic part of the country's wildlife. Tanzania is home to several species of zebras, including the plains zebra (Equus quagga), which is the most common and widely distributed zebra species in Africa.

Here are some key points about zebras in Tanzania:

Distribution: Zebras can be found in various regions of Tanzania, including national parks, game reserves, and conservation areas. They are particularly abundant in the Serengeti ecosystem, which encompasses Serengeti National Park, Ngorongoro Conservation Area, and surrounding areas.

Plains Zebra: The plains zebra is the species of zebra most commonly seen in Tanzania. They have a striking black and white striped coat that acts as excellent camouflage in the open grasslands. These zebras live in herds and are known for their distinctive social behavior.

Migration: Tanzania is famous for the Great Wildebeest Migration, which involves millions of wildebeests, zebras, and other herbivores moving in search of fresh grazing areas. The migration takes place annually, as the herds move between the Serengeti in Tanzania and the Maasai Mara in Kenya. Zebras play a crucial role in this spectacle, forming mixed herds with wildebeests and migrating together.

Social Behavior: Zebras are social animals that live in family groups called harems. A harem usually consists of one dominant male, several females, and their offspring. These groups help protect each other from predators and engage in cooperative behaviors, such as mutual grooming.

Grazing Habits: Zebras are herbivores and primarily graze on grass. They play an essential role in maintaining the balance of the ecosystem by consuming grass and creating grazing lawns, which benefit other herbivores and promote new growth.

Predators: Zebras face predation from various large carnivores in Tanzania, including lions, hyenas, and African wild dogs. Their striped coats are believed to confuse predators and make it challenging to single out an individual zebra in a herd.

Conservation: Zebras are not considered endangered species, and their populations in Tanzania are generally stable. However, like other wildlife, they face challenges due to habitat loss, poaching, and human-wildlife conflicts. Conservation efforts and protected areas in Tanzania help safeguard their populations and habitats.

Seeing zebras in their natural habitat is a remarkable experience for wildlife enthusiasts and tourists visiting Tanzania. They contribute to the country's rich biodiversity and add to the allure of its renowned national parks and reserves.

It's a cool sight seeing the symbiosis of the Zebra and Oxpecker that I feel fortunate to have captured in this photograph. See the blog to learn more about the Oxpeckers that actually feast on the blood of their hosts. 

I am now offering this as a limited edition Gallery Acrylic Facemount.

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SEPTEMBER 30, 2023

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48" x 48" Gallery Acrylic Facemount

Acrylic facemounts are very popular mediums for photographers, art galleries, and fine art applications. Since an acrylic facemount has greater longevity, durability, and quality of materials, it is also ideal for creating wall art for the home or corporate art.

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Your image is printed on archival photographic paper using pigment-based inks with Epson professional printers. Utilizing all-new high-performance printhead technology, the print colors and quality are fine art and industry-best. We add a subtle glow to your print, with a metallic print upgrade - a perfect effect for this image. 

On our Gallery Acrylic Facemount, there is no added space between the acrylic and the print. This enhances the image and its colors and reflects them brilliantly in your home or gallery. This vibrant option's unique style has easily become a favorite among professional artists and galleries.

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Size: 48" x 48"
Gallery Acrylic Facemount
Epson Metallic Photo Paper
1/4“ Trulife Acrylic
This photo will use our aluminum framing option which is lighter, more rigid, and better structurally. Hanging hardware provided.

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Serengeti Symbiosis

An oxpecker, also known as a tickbird, is a type of bird that belongs to the Buphagidae family. It is native to the savannas and open woodlands of sub-Saharan Africa. Oxpeckers are best known for their symbiotic relationship with large mammals, such as ungulates (hoofed animals) like zebras, giraffes, and antelopes.

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