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Tapir born at Howletts Wild Animal Park

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Tapir born at Howletts Wild Animal Park
Tapir born at Howletts Wild Animal Park

A tapir has been born at Howletts Wild Animal Park in Bekesbourne.

The male tapir – born five weeks ago and named Mendoza – has just been revealed to the public and is doing well despite an uncertain start to his life.

Keeper Dave Stokes said: “The infant had a shaky start in life due to an unknown stomach upset that caused diarrhoea.

“After a course of antibiotics he is doing much better – he is off medication and is gaining weight by the day.”

Tapirs are found in rainforests and swamps in Brazil, Colombia, Venezuala and Paraguay. They are classified as endangered and Howletts now has six Brazilian tapirs.

Tapir factfile

  • A tapir is a large browsing mammal, similar in shape to a pig
  • The species is classified as endangered or vulnerable
  • It's catchily known as an odd-toed ungulate
  • They can reach 7ft in length and weigh a whopping 700lbs
  • In 1998, a zookeeper in Oklahoma City was mauled and had an arm severed by a tapir bite

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