Great News for Tapirs

Scientists have recently discovered some amazing news for the lowland tapirs!  Throughout the Bolivian and Peruvian Amazon rainforest, it is thought that over 14,000 lowland tapirs are thriving.

Bird uses tapir for landing pad in the Madidi-Tambopata Landscape. Photo by: Mileniusz Spanowics/WCS.
  • Researchers traveled to Bolivia and Peru to estimate the amount of lowland tapirs currently in the Greater Madidi-Tambopata Landscape Conservation Program.
  • These researchers came up with their number through use of camera traps, thousands of distribution records, and interviews.
  • Lowland, or Brazilian, tapirs are currently listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List.  Since these survey results came back with estimate of 14,500 individuals or more, it shows how important this area is as a major stronghold for the species!
  • The major threats to the animals are habitat loss, poaching, bushmeat hunting, and competition with livestock.  In order to protect these interesting animals, land needs to be set aside and protected for them.
  • Tapirs are not only one of the most interesting creatures of South America, they are also the largest!  They have survived the extinction that took out most of South America’s other large species like the giant ground sloths and smilodons, a type of saber toothed cat.
  • Since it takes tapirs such a long time to produce offspring, they are very susceptible to extinction.  This is why it is our job to make sure they have a safe habitat to live in and keep them protected!

Read the full story here: Photos: Scientists discover tapir bonanza in the Amazon

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