The Domestic donkey is a hoofed mammal in the family Equidae, the same family as the horse. It derives from the African wild ass, Equus africanus, and may be classified either as a subspecies thereof, Equus africanus asinus, or as a separate species, Equus asinus. It was domesticated in Africa, probably about 5,000 or 6,000 years ago, and has been used mainly as a working animal since that time. There are more than 40 million donkeys in the world, mostly in underdeveloped countries, where they are used principally as draught or pack animals.
Diurnal animals are active during the daytime, with a period of sleeping or other inactivity at night. The timing of activity by an animal depends ...
A herbivore is an animal anatomically and physiologically adapted to eating plant material, for example, foliage, for the main component of its die...
In zoology, a graminivore (not to be confused with a granivore) is an herbivorous animal that feeds primarily on grass. Graminivory is a form of g...
Terrestrial animals are animals that live predominantly or entirely on land (e.g., cats, ants, snails), as compared with aquatic animals, which liv...
Precocial species are those in which the young are relatively mature and mobile from the moment of birth or hatching. Precocial species are normall...
Grazing is a method of feeding in which a herbivore feeds on plants such as grasses, or other multicellular organisms such as algae. In agriculture...
Among animals, viviparity is the development of the embryo inside the body of the parent. The term 'viviparity' and its adjective form 'viviparous'...
A cursorial organism is one that is adapted specifically to run. An animal can be considered cursorial if it has the ability to run fast (e.g. chee...
Polygyny is a mating system in which one male lives and mates with multiple females but each female only mates with a single male.
A dominance hierarchy (formerly and colloquially called a pecking order) is a type of social hierarchy that arises when members of animal social gr...
NoNot a migrant
Animals that do not make seasonal movements and stay in their native home ranges all year round are called not migrants or residents.
Donkeys vary considerably in size, depending on both breed and environmental conditions, and heights at the withers range from less than 90 cm (35 in) to approximately 150 cm (59 in). Most donkeys have dorsal and shoulder stripes, primitive markings which form a distinctive cross pattern on their backs
Domesticated individuals of this species occur around the globe. However, true wild donkeys can be found only in northern Africa and the Arabian peninsula. These animals are known to favor warm and dry climatic conditions, in which feral donkeys typically live.
Donkeys are highly social creatures, eagerly associating with both conspecifics and other livestock animals, including horses, cows, goats, sheep, and llamas. Periods of increased activity occur in the morning and evening, while the midday hours are typically spent resting. Donkeys are extremely cautious by nature, due to which they will avoid doing anything that seems to be dangerous. For example, when alarmed, they usually freeze or run. When the danger has passed, donkeys try to find the source of the threat. As a result, they got a reputation as stubborn animals, although they are actually quite obedient, hard-working creatures. Normally quiet and peaceful, they fiercely defend their foals when needed. Moreover, donkeys are sometimes trained to protect other domestic livestock such as sheep and goats. When under threat, they show a remarkable degree of aggression, occasionally attacking and trampling large dogs and humans.
Donkeys are polygynous, which means that one male mates with many females during a breeding season. Breeding occurs year-round. The gestation period usually lasts for 11-14 months, after which a single foal is born. Newborn babies are developed and are able to stand and feed during the first 30 minutes of their lives. Weaning occurs at 5 months old. Both males and females of this species are ready to mate at 2 years old, although males usually do so only after 3-4 years old when they become dominant.
As stated by the Wikipedia resource, the global population of these animals was estimated at as much as 41 million individuals in 2006, 11 million of which lived in China (the largest population of this species by country). Other states with large numbers of donkey populations are Pakistan, Ethiopia, and Mexico.
Over thousands of years, donkeys have been important working animals in various parts of the world. They are still very important livestock species in many countries. These animals originate from Wild asses. They first appeared during the predynastic period, as early as 6,000 years ago in ancient Egypt, north-eastern Africa. The overall population of donkeys is currently increasing, whereas the numbers of the African wild ass and the related onager are decreasing. These three species have long served humans as beasts of burden and companions.