Grévy’s Zebra has a highly discontinuous range, being found from the eastern side of the Rift Valley in Kenya to the Tana R. There is a small, isolated population east of the theAlledeghi Plains north-east of Awash N. P. in Ethiopia. Population extends to north of Mt Kenya although a few animals are found further south-east along the Tana. There is a small population in and around Tsavo East N. P. in Kenya that was introduced in the 1970s. They are considered to be extirpated from Somalia (where the last confirmed sightings date to 1973); sightings from S Sudan require confirmation.
This animal is found in Eritrea, Ethiopia, and possibly Somalia. Some animals may persist in Djibuti, but their presence is not registered. In Ethiopia and Somalia, the population has been significantly reduced, both in size and population size. Habitat in Ethiopia and Eritrea, African plains zebras live in arid grassland arcs of the Great Rift Valley.
Over the past four decades, Grévy’s Zebras have expanded their range onto the Laikipia Plateau, primarily for anthropogenic reasons. Grévy’s zebras live in arid and semi-arid grasslands/shrublands (annual rainfall between 100 and650 mm)where there is permanent water. The lack of standing water ultimately limits their incursion further to arid areas to the east and north, as well as competition with others, even plains zebras.
In the recent past, plains zebras were not present west of the Nile. Fossil remains from North Africa (Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Mali, Libya) to Cape Town are known.’ Suitable habitats include grasslands and grassland–bushland mosaics (from humid to mesic environments); also present in miombo woodland.
On Mt Kenya, Plains Zebras occur up to 4300 m, and individual home ranges can cover up to 1000 m in altitude. Absent from the Congo basin rainforest, and from the dune desert. Water is an essential requirement for the habitat and they rarely move more than 12 km from it. DeHoop N. R., Karoo N. R., now the Camdeboo N. P. (Graaff-Reinet), Commando Drift N. R., Baviaanskloof Wilderness Area, Tsolwana N.R. and Gariep Dam N. R.
The current distribution of Mountain zebras differs from that of historical moments, due to the establishment of artificial water points which have enabled them to occupy previously unsuitable habitats. In Angola, a population survived in Iona N. P. (Huntley 1972), though the current status of this population is unknown.
In Namibia, the subspecies is discontinuously distributed in four populations: from Kunene province in the south to R Ugab. and eastwards to the Outjo District; the Erongo Mts; on the escarpment from the Swakop R. southwards to the Naukluft Mtsand eastward along the Kuiseb and Gaub drainages into the Khomas Hochland; Hartmann’s Mountain Zebras are established in three conservation areas in the Northern Cape, SouthAfrica (Richtersveld and Augrabies National Parks and Goegap Provincial N. R. ), and have also been introduced outside their range in the Western Cape and Eastern Cape.
Habitats are rugged, broken mountainous and escarpment areas up to around 2000 m with a rich diversity of grass species and perennial water sources. Cape Mountain Zebras in Mountain Zebra N. P. show a regular seasonal movement, from an open grassy plateau in the summer where there are stands of Themeda triandra to more wooded hill slopes and ravines in the winter.
When the temperature drops sharply, the zebras leave the plateau to seek shelter in the wooded ravines. However, seasonal variations in zebra numbers on the plateau are more closely associated with variations in rainfall than with temperature. The numbers on the plateau are lowest during the driest time of the year(Aug and Sep), rather than the coldest (Jun and Jul).
The movement is associated with a relative change in diet quality as indicated by crude In the summer, fecal and grass protein contents were higher in samples collected on the plateau than in those collected on the hill slopes. In the winter the reverse was the case.
On the plateau, the cover of grasses in the height range favored by zebras changed only slightly from summer to winter. Mountain zebras drink twice a day during summer so water is one of the limiting factors in their distribution.
Mountain Zebras occur on the open sandy plains where they must endure extended periods away from water. Where surface water is not available, they will dig for it with a scraping movement of the front hooves, at times excavating to depths of a meter or more.