They are a sub-species of the African wild ass that is facing a critical risk of extinction: there are less than 700 mature individuals mainly between Eritrea and Ethiopia and the species is almost extinct in Somalia, Sudan and Egypt.
The greatest problem for the Somali wild ass is that they are hunted for food as well as being used in traditional medicine. This species is also seen to be affected by climate change, human impact and livestock.
They can be recognised by the stripes on their feet, similar to those of zebras. Their habitat is arid and semi-arid regions of scrub and pastures and they feed on a wide variety of pastures and grasses. The groups are formed by females and their offspring and at certain times they can be seen to be associated with the males in harems.