How To Define A Zebra

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Pablo Edronkin

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Zebras are related to horses, but these, in turn, are not well known despite the fact that we think we know them: scientists still don't agree on what exactly is a horse and where does the species come from. People invest and spend millions in horses every year, people bet on them and we have them living with us, but we don't know them for sure.

The reason is that zoology as a science has not established precisely the origin of the modern horse: donkeys, zebras and horses belong to the same genus, which is divided in six known species: zebras belong to three of them called 'Equus hippotigris,' 'Equus quagga' and 'Equus dolichohippus Did you think that there was only one kind? And there is one species, 'Equus ferus' divided into two subspecies called 'Equus ferus przewalski' and 'Equus ferus gmelni.'

Now, our modern horse, called 'Equus caballus' is thought to have elvolved from 'Equus ferus' via the Przewalski horse type, or the Tarpan, which is the other subspecies. The problem is that while our modern hose has 64 cromosomes, 'Equus ferus' and its two subspecies have 66, and this doesn't match. So, what happened there? And until the question is not answered, no one can say for sure what a horse really is.

It seems odd that despite the fact that we believe that the horse is one of the best-know animals, we really don't seem to know a iota about them. So, instead of playing with horses, you should perhaps play with zebras, because about them everything seems to be knowledgeable.



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