The Baird's Tapir is one of four species of tapir still left in the world. The
remaining species are the: Brazilian, Malayan and Mountain.
The people of Belize, Central America call their tapir "a
mountain cow." However, despite the local name, the Mountain Tapirs do not reside in Belize: only the Baird's
Tapir lives in Belize. The Baird's Tapir is also the national animal of Belize.
Reaching a weight of over 800 pounds the Baird's Tapir is
the second largest of all tapir. The Malayan Tapir is the largest of all tapir species. A Baird's Tapir can
grow as tall as 4 feet and as long as 6.5 feet.
Unlike other many mammals which has the same amount of toes
on all four feet, a Baird's Tapir has four toes on its' front feet and only three toes on its' back feet. The
Baird's Tapir has dark brownish hair so short that from a distance it looks hairless. The Baird's Tapir has a
cream-colored marking on its face and throat distinctive only to its' species.
Due to the size of a Baird's Tapir only a jaguar can kill
an adult Baird's on land. In the water only an American Crocodile is capable of killing a grown
After gestation of about 13 months a single tapir will be
born to a mother about once every 2 years. Baby tapirs will learn to swim at only 3 weeks of age. A tapir will
leave its' mother at about the age of 2 or 3 years and will live an almost completely solitary life till it
dies at about the age of 25 to 30 years. Both male and female tapirs reach reproductive age between 2 to 4
Tapirs are very shy and will probably run and hide from
someone it sees. There are very rare occasions where a tapir will attack a person. However, when tapirs attack
they can run very fast and their jaws are powerful enough to sever limbs. Be careful and always have a partner
when walking in any known tapir territory. ~Anthony Benjamin~