The Malayan Tapir has a special black and white pattern. They are good swimmers, and live in forests where there is water. But the forests have become smaller and smaller, and the Malayan tapirs are in trouble.
Body length: 180-250cm
Tail length: 5-10cm
(Source: Doubutsu Sekai-isan* Red Data Animals Kodansha) (*World Animal Heritage)
They live around water in forests in South-East Asia.
Malayan tapir eat grass and nuts, water plants, and fruits. They put food in their mouths using their noses, just like an elephant.
Young Malayan tapirs have length-wise stripes. The pattern looks the same as young wild boars. It makes them very hard to see in the dark, or around trees.
A black and white pattern that hides them from enemies
Malayan Tapirs have black and white sections like the Giant Panda. You'd think it would make them stand out, but tigers and other predators have a hard time finding them. Malayan Tapirs go out at night, so predators can only see the white parts of them. Predators can't see their shape. They look relaxed, but can run away very quickly if in trouble. If they see a predator, they quickly hide under water.
The forests are disappearing...
Malayan Tapirs are skilled swimmers that live in forests where there is water. The forests are disappearing. Living in small numbers in small forests, it's hard to find food. They're also have trouble on finding mates. Their numbers are becoming smaller. Out of all tapirs, Malayan Tapirs are the closest to extinction.
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