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Today (Thu 27th Apr, 2017) is...

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27th Apr each year

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There’s an odd little creature that’s a native of Central and South America, and can even be found in SE Asia. What kind of odd critter? Well, it looks a bit like a pig, with it’s general build and toes with hooves, but it also looks a bit, just a little, like an elephant with its long snout! What are we talking about? The Tapir! This wonderful animal is currently on the watch-list as it has been over-hunted for its meat and hides. World Tapir Day raises awareness about these endangered animals and helps to protect them for future generations.

History of World Tapir Day
World Tapir Day was established with the intent of protecting all the members of this endangered species from extinction, that they might still be here for our children. The areas they inhabit are either forest or jungle, which makes them particularly vulnerable to deforestation, especially as large herbivores. But the dangers of their extinction goes even further than just the loss of another unique species, the loss of the Tapir could in fact endanger the entire remaining forests. As part of their natural habits, they also serve to disperse seeds throughout the jungle, and are one of the oldest species found in these areas.

Many people are unaware of the Tapir as a species, meaning they are losing a special part of the world without ever knowing they exist. So unknown are these animals that those who visit Zoos that frequently mistake them for members of another species. This is even a problem in those areas where they live natively, so World Tapir Day was established to help raise world awareness of this species.

How to Celebrate World Tapir Day
Celebrating World Tapir Day can be as simple as picking up a book or searching the internet for information on the species and familiarizing yourself with the role it plays in its home environment. If you feel like taking another step in celebrating World Tapir Day, then you can go out and help to raise awareness by organizing events at your local school or in your community.

You can also look into your local community zoo and determine whether or not they have a Tapir exhibit, and if they do you can help to raise awareness of their presence their and encourage people to visit the zoo and learn more about them! You can also send money to organizations that work to protect the jungles that the Tapirs call home.

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