SANTA BARBARA, CA – Zebra sightings appear to be on the rise near Santa Barbara.
Yes, you read that right.
A photo taken by Marcos Chavez showed a zebra blocking traffic on West Camino Cielo in the mountains above Santa Barbara. He told Noozhawk he was cycling down the road around 2 p.m. Sunday when he encountered the animal and a bunch of stopped cars. Stunned onlookers took photos through sunroofs and car windows.
After taking his own photo, Chavez tried to pedal. That’s when he said the zebra tried to follow him.
“I jumped on my bike and started pedaling really fast,” Chavez told the outlet. “He took three steps, but the zebra slipped and fell.”
A spokeswoman for the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office told Patch on Tuesday that they had not heard of any calls for zebra services and the sightings did not appear to be a law enforcement issue. .
Although sightings of zebras are rare in the area, they are not unheard of.
And in 2015, a user posted a photo of what appeared to be the same zebra crossing West Camino Cielo Road.
“I’ve heard of this zebra, but this is the first time I’ve seen it,” the user said. “Apparently his name is Maynard. It was with two llamas. Pretty cool, but those creatures shouldn’t be wandering down the road like that. They might hurt themselves!”
Last year, a photo surfaced on Reddit appearing to show the same zebra Chavez saw. In this photo, the zebra is filling up with wild grass again. This user also identified the zebra as Maynard.
Indeed, aindicated that people can dine and hike in the mountains above Santa Barbara with a domesticated zebra named, you guessed it, Maynard. Maynard was described as wandering and domesticated.
Maynard is, apparently, popular with locals, with many neighbors scoffing at zebra sightings.
So if you’re ever in the Santa Ynez Mountains and come across a zebra, don’t be surprised to hear “Oh yeah, it’s Maynard!”