Baby Zebra Named After Online Voting

"Kito" is Swahili for "Jewel"

Friday, Aug 31, 2012  |  Updated 3:23 PM CDT
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Lincoln Park Zoo

The unnamed newborn is the second offspring for parents Adia and Clayton.

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Kito. It's a gem of a name.

After an online vote, Lincoln Park Zoo officials gave the name to a Zebra colt born last week. Kito -- a Swahili word for "jewel" -- bested three other options: Hanisi, Akili and Daktari.

"The name is fitting as we think Kito is a treasure,” said General Curator Dave Bernier in a written  release. "Grevy’s zebras are endangered in the wild and we at Lincoln Park Zoo are proud to do our part in the conservation of the majestic species."

Kito was born Aug. 23, the second offspring for parents Adia and Clayton. He's still being kept out of public viewing to give him time to bond with his mother.

"Adia is a protective mom, but Kito is getting brave," said Bernier. "He is exploring his new home and stretching those long legs of his galloping around the yard."

The grevy species is endangered in eastern Africa and the largest zebras, weighing up to 900 pounds as adults.

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