Fri, Mar 17, 2006 - Page 20 News List

A unique look 獨特的樣貌

A South African plains zebra at a zoo in Duisburg, Germany.
德國杜伊斯堡一處動物園的南非草原斑馬. (照片:歐新社)

PHOTO: EPA

Do you know what kind of animal this is?

It is a zebra. Zebras are from Africa. They are famous for their black and white stripes. Each zebra's stripes are unique, so you will never see two zebras that look exactly alike.

Zebras' beautiful stripes make them different from other animals. Many people have asked why zebras need their stripes. Some people used to believe that zebras needed their stripes for protection. Those people thought zebras' stripes made it easier for them to hide from animals that might want to eat them.

Other people thought zebras needed stripes to tell each other apart. But today, people believe a zebra's stripes are there to confuse flies that try to suck its blood. (kayleen Hartman, Taipei Times)

你知道這是哪一種動物嗎?

這是斑馬。斑馬來自非洲,以身上的黑白條紋聞名。每一隻斑馬的條紋都很獨特,所以你絕對看不到兩隻長得一模一樣的斑馬。

斑馬身上美麗的條紋讓牠們有別於其他動物。許多人都問過,斑馬身上為什麼需要條紋呢?有些人一直相信,斑馬身上需要條紋來做為保護。這些人認為斑馬的條紋讓牠們更容易躲離可能吃掉他們的動物。

另外有些人認為,斑馬需要條紋來分辨彼此。不過現今,人們相信斑馬的條紋之所以存在,是為了要讓前來吸血的蒼蠅搞不清楚該吸哪裡。 (何楷琳,台北時報)

Quick Quiz
複習測驗

1. What are zebras famous for?

a. They can confuse animals that try to eat them.

b. They can hide from flies.

c. They have black and white stripes.

d. They can talk.

2. Why do people today think zebras have stripes?

a. So they won't get eaten.

b. To confuse a blood-sucking fly.

c. To be able to tell each other apart.

d. So they match each other.


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