The tapir is a large beast that lives in South and Central America.
They rarely grow more than a meter, but in length, they reach two meters, and in weight – 300 kg. Externally, the tapir resembles a pig, although its closest relatives are rhinoceroses and horses. Taking into account a quite noticeable proboscis on the muzzle, we can assume that the genetic code has something from elephants. These are not all interesting facts about the tapir.
Tapirs prefer to live near water bodies, in impassable forests. All their life is connected with water: they hide there from enemies, clean the wool, sometimes eat and mate. Animals are exclusively herbivorous, so in addition to algae, they can eat vegetables and fruits. It is quite understandable that American farmers are not very happy with the neighborhood with these amazing creatures. We have collected for you the most interesting facts about tapir.
7 facts about tapir
- In translation from one of the South American languages “tapir” means “fat”. This is due to its thick and strong skin.
- The probosci’s tapir needs not only for a better smell perception. With its help, the beast can spend a few minutes underwater, which helps it to hide from enemies.
- At night, tapirs often come to fields and vegetable gardens. There, they gladly treat themselves with grains and root vegetables.
- There are five types of tapirs. One of them lives in Southeast Asia, and the rest – in South and Central America.
- Only the cherry tapir has light wool on its back. The other species have brown, gray, or black coloring.
- In the natural environment, tapirs live up to 30 years. In captivity, they live about the same amount. These creatures do not even care about where to live. They feel equally comfortable everywhere.
- Tapir cubs do not look like their parents at all. There are white spots and stripes on their wool, which disappear with time.
Top 3 most interesting facts about tapir
- In 2013, a small black tapir was opened. It became one of the few ungulates that have been discovered in the last 100 years.
- Once the tapirs lived all over the world. But over time, some of them became extinct, the others were exterminated.
- Originally, there were 18 types of tapirs. 13 of them have not survived to this day. It is noteworthy that the tapir has many natural enemies. However, the main damage to the population of these animals was caused by humans.
There is an intensive hunt for the tapirs. Farmers shoot them off for destroying their fields, poachers shoot them off for meat and skin. Now, four species are taken under protection, flat tapirs are still quite numerous.
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