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Happy World Tapir Day!

Did you know that 27th April is World Tapir Day, a day to celebrate Katy’s most loved animals! But what is it that Chichester Copywriter likes about these bizarre, enigmatic creatures? Could it be their funny wiggly prehensile snouts, could it be the little squeaking noise they use to communicate or the fact that the love munching fruit and can be found lazing around in pools when hot? Well, to be perfectly honest, it’s all of the above.

World Tapir Day was first established to raise awareness about the four species of tapir that inhabit Central and South America and South-East Asia. Each of these species is in decline:

The Mountain Tapir – faces extinction within the next twenty years, should conservation efforts not be introduced in its ever-shrinking natural range in Colombia and Ecuador.

The Baird’s Tapir – the largest mammal of the Americas faces a similar threat to the Mountain Tapir in its home range in Central America.

The Malayan Tapir (Tallulah) – faces severe threats in Indonesia and other countries due to habitat destruction.

The Brazilian Tapir (Terrence) – while this is the most common species of tapir it’s vulnerable because of the increasing rate of destruction to the Amazon.

Tapirs live in jungles, grasslands, swamps and cloud forests, each of which is threatened by human activity, from mining and palm oil plantations to roads and settlements. They form an important part of the ecosystem as large herbivores and seed dispersers, and form one of the oldest surviving genera in the animal kingdom.

Despite their size, history and ecological importance, tapirs aren’t a well known species. Tapirs are often misidentified by zoo visitors and are rarely the stars of children’s books, something that Katy aims to change through her own creative writing.

Find out more and find ways that you can help save the tapir here:

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Image courtesy of Elise Smorczewski.

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