24 Animals that Start with Z

By Kevin Myers | 2023 Update

When we think of animals that start with the letter ‘Z’, we can only think of a zebra. Certainly, there are numerous fascinating animals whose names start with the letter Z. We have created a comprehensive list of these animals and fascinating information about them. Keep reading!

1. Zebra

Zebra is the most common and geographically widespread zebra species. Its range is fragmented but spans much of southern and eastern Africa, and south of the Sahara. These striped animals possess the speed needed to survive. These heavy animals have the ability to reach 40 mph and have black and white stripes over their body.

Fun Fact: Two zebras cannot have the same pattern of stripes.

2. Zorro

Zorro is a species of mammal in the family Canidae. They are native to The Neotropics. They are nocturnal carnivores. Individuals are known to live for 138 months and can grow to 0.64 metres. The locals also like to call it the South American Gray fox. Regardless of the name, it is not an actual fox but is more closely related to wolves and jackals.

Fun Fact: Zorros are classified as false foxes due to their resemblance to foxes.

3. Zig Zag Eel

Zig Zag Eel also known as the tire-track eel, tire-track spiny eel, or marbled spiny eel, is a species of ray-finned, spiny eel. These are native to the riverine fauna of India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia, and other parts of Southeast Asia. This long fish is notable as an aquarium fish. The eel is only about six inches long.

Fun Fact: These aggressive fishes are known to attempt jumping out of their aquarium.

4. Zebra Seahorse

Zebra Seahorse, or Hippocampus zebra, is a species of fish in the family Syngnathidae. It is endemic to northern Australia. The stripes on its skin gave it its name. These stripes provide camouflage to protect from predators. The maximum reported depth is 69 m. It is ovoviviparous, meaning the male carries the eggs in a brood pouch under the tail.

Fun Fact: Male zebra seahorses nourish their developing embryo in a pouch.

Check out this video for the most beautiful species of seahorses.

5. Zorilla

Zorilla is a striped polecat, also called the African polecat. The zorilla is native to Southern Africa. This animal’s appearance makes one think it is related to a skunk, but it is actually closely related to the weasel. This cute animal actually hunts and is very aggressive. Its small stomach makes it need to feed frequently.

Fun Fact: The name “zorilla” comes from the word “zorro,” which in Spanish means “fox.”

6. Zenaida Dove

Zenaida Dove is a member of the Columbidae bird family, including doves and pigeons. It is the national bird of Anguilla, locally referred to as the “turtle dove. The zenaida dove is a brown, tall dove with rounded tail feathers. It is common in Anguilla and is often found in Cuba.

Fun Fact: Young Zenaida doves are developed enough to fly after only two weeks in the nest.

7. Zokor

Zokor, or Myospalacinae, are Asiatic burrowing rodents resembling mole rats. They are native to much of China, Kazakhstan, and Siberian Russia. Zokors use their strong front claws for digging. Zokor’s diet includes plant matter, such as tubers and seeds. These animals have a heightened sense of smell and compassionate eyes. Studies have demonstrated they are more closely related to blind mole rats.

Fun Fact: Zokors don’t have external ears.

8. Zebrafish

Zebrafish, or Danio rerio, is a freshwater fish native to South Asia. These unique fish typically live in moderately flowing water and shallow depth in streams, canals, ditches, etc. It is a common aquarium fish, frequently sold under the trade name zebra danio, and often called a “tropical fish,” although both tropical and subtropical.

Fun Fact: Zebrafishes have the ability to heal their hearts.

9. Zebra Duiker

Zebra Duiker is a small antelope found primarily in Liberia, the Ivory Coast, Sierra Leone, and occasionally Guinea. They are sometimes referred to as the banded duiker or stripped-back duiker. It is believed to be one of the earliest duiker species to have evolved. The undersides are pale, and the tail is rufous and lacks stripes. The face is an overall deep chestnut brown color.

Fun Fact: The stripes on the duiker’s back may prevent easy detection by predators.

10. Zigzag Heron

Zigzag Heron is a species of heron in the family Ardeidae. Its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical swamps. They stand about 32 centimetres in height. The plumage is grey-brown with fine black vermiculations; young birds sport warmer tones.

Fun Fact: These birds are reclusive and are known to stay hidden even while foraging.

11. Zapata Wren

Zapata Wren is a medium-sized greyish-brown bird that lives in dense shrubs of the Zapata Swamp, Cuba. It is the only specie of the monotypic genus Ferminia, which is endemic to Cuba and endangered. This bird measures about six inches in length and has a long tail. This omnivore can eat insects, spiders, plant material, and tiny frogs and lizards.

Fun Fact: The Zapata Wren is famous for its strange-sounding song.

12. Zorse

Zorse, or Equus caballus, is the offspring of a zebra stallion and a horse mare. The rarer reverse pairing is sometimes called an hebra. They result in an animal that looks very horse-like yet has stripes like a Zebra. Like most other animal hybrids, the Zorse is sterile. It is unlikely to find any of these animals occurring naturally in the wild.

Fun Fact: The Zorse is a muscular animal with nearly 360-degree vision.

13. Zonkey

Zonkey, or Equus asinus, is a cross between a male zebra and a female donkey. These are one of the few hybrid cases in the wild. Zonkeys are not a natural species because they have an odd number of chromosomes and cannot reproduce.

Fun Fact: Even though zonkeys are rare, they are bred in many zoos and specialized farms worldwide.

14. Zapata Rail

Zapata Rail is a medium-sized, dark-coloured rail. This species originated in Cuba, occurring only in the Zapata swamp. It has brown upper parts, greyish-blue underparts, a red-based yellow bill, white under-tail coverts, and red eyes and legs. Its short wings render it almost flightless. Spanish zoologist Fermín Zanón Cervera discovered the species in March 1927 in Santo Tomás.

Fun Fact: These birds are omnivores and feed on invertebrates like insects and plant materials.

15. Zebu

Zebu is a species or subspecies of domestic cattle originating in the Indian subcontinent. A fatty hump characterizes zebu on their shoulders, a large dewlap, and sometimes drooping ears. Some 75 breeds of zebu are known, split about evenly between African species and Indian ones. Zebu is considered “ecological” since they could graze on natural grasses, and their meat was lean without chemical residues.

Fun Fact: The zebu cattle are sacred in many religions, notably Hinduism.

16. Zebra Pleco

Zebra Pleco is a catfish endemic to a small section of the Rio Xingu in Brazil. It occurs in the big bend area of the river, downstream from the town of Altamira, Para. It gets its name from its black and white stripes, resembling the coloration of a zebra. This species was exported from Brazil for sale as aquarium fish.

Fun Fact: A large Zebra Pleco can only get about 4 inches long.

17. Zebra Shark

Zebra Shark is a species of carpet shark and the sole member of the family Stegostomatidae. It is found throughout the tropical Indo-Pacific. Adult zebra sharks are unique in appearance, with five longitudinal ridges on a cylindrical body, a low caudal fin comprising nearly half the total length, and usually a pattern of dark spots on a pale background.

Fun Fact: Zebra Shark females can reproduce without males.

Check out this video for interesting facts about zebra sharks.

18. Zebra Mussel

Zebra Mussel is a small freshwater mussel. The species originates from the lakes of southern Russia and Ukraine. These tiny freshwater mussels usually measure about an inch long. They use their small size to their advantage, as up to 700,000 mussels have been found living in one square metre.

Fun Fact: Zebra Mussels are prolific reproduces, as one female can lay up to a million eggs annually.

19. Zebra Finch

Zebra Finch is the most common estrildid finch of Central Australia. It covers most of Australia, avoiding only the south and some parts of the north. Zebra finches do not measure more than four inches in length. The males have striped black and white tails and colourful coats. These finches exhibit lifelong monogamous bonding, but there have been instances of infidelity.

Fun Fact: These tiny birds are capable of composing entirely new songs.

20. Zamurito

Zamurito, or Calophysusmacropterus, is a catfish from the Amazon and Orinoco River basins. This fish has also been placed in its own family, Calophysidae. This species reaches 40 centimetres. This species is reported to commonly attack the fish caught in fishermen’s nets and seines and those hooked on trotlines or gaffes.

Fun Fact: Zamuritos bite and tear the flesh of other fishes in an aquarium.

21. Zebra Spitting Cobra

Zebra Spitting Cobra, or Najanigricincta, is a species native to Africa. These cobras have potent venom that can cause severe eye damage or blindness. This reptile grows to about 3.9 to 4.9 feet or more and has a lifespan of as long as 12 years. It has a rodent, small birds, fish, and frogs diet.

Fun Fact: This snake can quickly spit at a distance of nine feet or further.

22. Zebra Tarantula

Zebra Tarantula is a species of tarantula inhabiting most of western Costa Rica and other parts of Central America. These are deep-burrowing spiders. They live in open, semiarid scrublands and are often found in large aggregations.

Fun Fact: They can stay unseen in their burrows for months.

23. Zuchon

Zuchon is a sweet, loving dog breed. They are a mix between the Shih Tzu and Bichon Frise. They are also known as the teddy bear dog. The goal was to breed an affectionate companion with the best traits of each breed. The resulting Zuchon pup makes a beautiful pet and, with the proper training, a fantastic service animal.

Fun Fact: The breed often changes colours throughout life, with its puppy coat becoming lighter over the first few years of life, then darkening as it ages.

24. Zone-Tailed Pigeon

The zone-tailed pigeon is endemic to the mountains of Mindoro in the central Philippines and is the giant Pigeon in the country, reaching 50 cm in length. Its main threats are habitat loss and hunting. IUCN estimates the population to be 600 to 1,700 remaining mature individuals.

Fun Fact: The Mindoro imperial pigeon can be seen singly, in pairs, or in groups of up to four individuals.


We hope you enjoyed reading our article and could find any animals that start with Z that you were looking for today.

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