A native of the Andean highlands of Colombia, Ecuador and Peru, the Mountain Tapir is the most endangered large mammal in South America. While some mountain tapirs remain in the wild, only nine, including two breeding pairs, exist in captivity. One pair is at Cheyenne Mountain Zoo.
This makes protection of the remaining wild populations of mountain tapirs critical. In addition to our breeding program, Cheyenne Mountain Zoo actively supports establishing breeding programs and ongoing research in the mountain tapirs three range countries. With better understanding of their ecology and challenges in the wild, a conservation plan can be created.
Our pair of endangered mountain tapirs have been moved to off-exhibit housing due to Encounter Africa construction. Our female is the only proven reproductive female in captivity in the world. The pair has had one offspring, but it was several years ago. That son is now at the Los Angeles Zoo.CMZoo staff is working with the pair to evaluate their current ability to reproduce.
For more on the Mountian Tapir visit http://www.tapirback.com/tapirgal/mountain/default.htm