Cryptid Wiki
Cryptid Wiki

The Quagga (/ˈkwɑːxɑː/ or /ˈkwæɡə/)(Equus quagga quagga) was a plains zebra that thrived in South Africa until it became extinct late in the nineteenth century. It was once assumed to be a separate species, but early genetic investigations revealed it to be a plains zebra subspecies. A more recent study concluded that it was simply the species' southernmost ecotype. The name came from the sound of its call, which was "kwa-ha-ha."


At the shoulder, the Quagga was estimated to measure 257 cm (8 ft 5 in) long and 125–135 cm (4 ft 1 in–4 ft 5 in) tall. It was distinguishable from other zebras by a limited pattern of brown and white stripes that ran mostly down the front of the body. The back was brown and striped, giving it a more horselike appearance. The distribution of stripes differed a lot between people. The quagga's behaviour is unknown, however it is thought to have congregated in herds of 30–50 individuals. Quaggas were described as wild and vivacious, but also as more gentle than Burchell's zebra. They were once abundant in the Karoo of Cape Province and the southern half of Orange Free State in South Africa.


The Quagga was heavily persecuted once the Dutch colony of South Africa began because it competed for food with tamed animals. Some were sent to European zoos, but breeding programmes were a failure. The quagga went extinct in the wild by 1878, with the final wild population living in the Orange Free State. On August 12, 1883, the final captive specimen died in Amsterdam. Only one quagga has ever been photographed alive, and only 23 of its skins have been preserved. The quagga was the first extinct animal to have its DNA analysed in 1984, and the Quagga Project is using Burchell's zebras to try to replicate the phenotypic of hair coat pattern and related features.

A group of scientists has now succeeded in creating a creature that is extremely similar to the Quagga.


Sightings of modern-day quaggas have been reported from Namibia, just west of South Africa, according to cryptozoologist Bernard Heuvelmans.