Ugly zebra gets makeover to help him find a mate

May 13, 2010 | by | 0 Comments

A zebra who failed to earn his stripes with the ladies has been given a full ‘makeover’ to help save the species – including having his teeth and nails done.

The love-shy zebra – called Bingo – has had his ”unequal” teeth straighten and hooves clipped to give him more pulling power.

Officials were forced to act after the coy stallion flopped in a breeding program and failed to mate with any females at Paignton Zoo in Devon.

Vets were brought in to to give the Hartmann’s mountain zebra a makeover – including straightening his teeth and clipping his hooves.

Bingo, 15, was sedated while a team of top animal doctors worked on his wonky molars and unkempt feet.

A zoo spokesman said: ”Bingo hasn’t really lived up to his name and has failed to mate with any of our females.

”We’ve tried to encourage him but he’s not managed to attract a female so we thought he needed some help.

”We’ve given him a bit of a makeover to help him find the right lady. In human terms he’s had his teeth and nails done.”

Bingo has been at the zoo for a number of years but has failed to find mate with either of its females Taru, eight or Goma, four.

Zoo vet Ghislaine Sayers anaesthetised him while the tooth and hoof work was carried out.

She said: ”It all went very smoothly and he made a very good recovery. He need dental treatment and his feet checked, too.

”He had a problem with a tooth on one side of his mouth leading to an uneven grinding of the molars and an unequal bite.”

The makeover involved a range of experts including an equine dentistry team, a farrier, an anaesthetist and two vets.

Bingo is now being moved Marwell Zoo in Hampshire where it is hoped he will have more success breeding.

Neil Bemment, curator of mammals at Paignton, said: ”Bingo is moving on because for whatever reason he hasn’t taken to our two females.

”There is a lack of available males in the European endangered species programme. We need more foals than we are getting to increase the population.

”Bingo is being moved on to see if he fares any better with some other mares.”

A new French stallion is being brought to Paignton Zoo in the hope that mares will have foals.

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