Hybrid animals are those whose parents belong to different species. They are usually sterile, but there are exceptions to this rule. The red wolf, a cross between the grey wolf and the coyote is known to have been able to reproduce easily in the wild. Probably the oldest known hybrid is the mule, a cross between a female horse and a male donkey. The mule was created when people found out they needed an animal that was less obstinate, more intelligent and faster than a donkey, but also more patient and hardier than a horse.
Hybrid animals are usually named by combining the names of the two parent species ( in this case the mule is an obvious exception ). In most cases, the name of the father’s species is used first and is succeeded by the name of the mother’s species. For example, a zedonk is an animal created by crossbreeding a zebra ( male ) and a donkey (female ), while a zorse has a zebra as the father and a horse as the mother.
Among the most well known hybrids are the liger ( a cross between a male tiger and a female lion ) and the tigon ( the species of the parents of this breed are opposite to those of the liger ). In the past, crossbreeds between wolves and dogs received the name wolf hybrids. Although nowadays scientists know that wolves and dogs are animals belonging to the same species, Canis Lupus, the term still exists.
Below are images of hybrid animals. What do you think about crossbreeding between different species?
(Image source: Wikipedia )
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