A baby tapir!
Hello baby! We revealed the newest addition to our endangered Brazilian tapir family in our first ever Facebook Live yesterday afternoon and if you missed it, you can catch up here…
Mum, Meena, gave birth to the female youngster on Sunday following a 13 month-long pregnancy, but has spent the last few days tucked away in the off-show dens.
Yesterday was the first time she brought the baby out in the paddock and we were delighted to capture it live on video for you all to see.
Assistant Curator Jay Haywood, said: “We’ve waited a long time to hear the pitter patter of tiny tapir feet, so we’re delighted she’s finally here.
“This is Meena’s sixth baby, so she’s a very experienced mum and the baby is very strong and healthy and as the footage shows, they’re both doing really well.”
Baby tapirs are born with the distinctive spotty and striped camouflage pattern, which will gradually begin fading in around six months time.
The stripes help them camouflage themselves from predators against the rainforest foliage, but they won’t disappear altogether as all tapirs retain stripes somewhere on their body.
Meena and baby will remain in the off-show dens for the next few weeks, as they continue to bond and keepers begin the process of introducing the youngster to dad, Chico, so they won’t be out in the paddock all the time, but stay tuned for more baby tapir updates and Facebook Lives in the coming weeks!