Seems like zebras are not very friendly with stripes!
A new research refutes the theory that the black and white on zebras help them stay cool in the hot sun.
A study conducted at the Lund University revealed one of the several theories about keeping zebra cool in the sunshine.
The black stripes get warmer than the white areas, and the theory states that this creates small vortexes when the hotter air above the dark fur meets the cooler air above the white fur. According to the theory, these vortexes works as a fan to cool the body.
To test this theory, the researchers filled big metal barrels with water and covered them with skin imitations in different colours: black and white stripes, black, white, brown and grey. They then placed the barrels in the sun and later measured the temperature in each barrel. Not surprisingly, the black one was the hottest and the white one the coolest. The striped and grey barrels were similar, and in these, the temperature did not go down.
Susanne Åkesson, a researcher of the theory concluded that the stripes didn’t lower the temperature. It turns out stripes don’t actually cool zebras.
The findings appeared in the Journal of Scientific Reports.