Tapir Conservation Partner in Brazil

As the world celebrated the closing ceremonies at the Rio Olympics on Sunday, we wanted to celebrate an amazing species that calls South America home – the tapir. Just as the USA’s medal count kept going up, so does the number of tapirs that have received a tracking collar for research with the Houston Zoo’s help. Since we started working with our tapir conservation partner, 57 tapirs have received a tracking collar. These tracking collars provide critical information for protecting tapirs in the wild.

Tapirs are the largest land mammal in South America with females weighing up to 700 pounds! There are four species of tapir in the world, with three of the four species found in Latin America – Baird’s, lowland, and mountain. The fourth species, the Malayan tapir, is found in Southeast Asia. Here at the Houston Zoo, we have a family of Baird’s tapir. This endangered animal is native to Central America.

 

At the Houston Zoo, we work to save tapirs in the wild through a partnership with the Tapir Specialist Group. It is a global group of biologists, zoo professionals, researchers and advocates dedicated to conserving tapirs and their habitat. The Houston Zoo works closely with this group’s Chair, Patricia Medici, to support a Lowland Tapir Project in Brazil.

Since the Olympic games were in Brazil, Patricia Medici participated in the Olympic torch route on June 26 through the city of Rio Brilhante.

The Houston Zoo also supports our partner with an event called Tapirs Helping Tapirs. For this event, Houston Zoo tapirs paint canvases that are sent to Brazil to be sold in a huge art exhibit to raise funds for protecting wild tapirs. This past April, we held a World Tapir Day event here at the zoo. This event had activities, a photo-op, and sold conservation items to benefit our conservation partner’s work saving tapirs in the wild.

To learn more about tapirs, come see the family of tapirs at the Houston Zoo, or visit www.houstonzoo.org/saving-wildlife.



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Sea Lion Keeper: Sure... (sends picture next to sea lion statue)

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Social Media Guy to Sea Lion Keeper: Can you send me a pic of you working with the sea lions in this chilly weather?

Sea Lion Keeper: Sure... (sends picture next to sea lion statue)

SMG: Im still using this.

 

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Are there some zoo animals that enjoy this weather?

SMG is another reason why Houston Zoo is the best Zoo!

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That’s my best friend Sophie for ya! 😂

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Weve heard of stalagmites but is stalagmice a thing?

 

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Ok, it took me a minute to get this. I was literally zooming in to try to find the mouse. 🤦🏻‍♀️🙄😂

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“Baby it’s cold outside!”

That's nothing! Talk to keepers from the northern states or Canada!

i was honestly looking for a mouse lol

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Two words. Pipe insulation.

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Brrrr. It’s cold out there! We have made the decision to close the Houston Zoo tomorrow, Wednesday, Jan. 17. Don’t worry, the animals are safe and warm in their night houses!

A limited number of staff from departments like Animal Programs, Safety and Security and Operations/Facilities will be onsite to perform essential services and have the Zoo ready for us to reopen Thursday morning.

A big ol' high-five to our awesome team members who braved this icy cold to come in and care for our animals and zoo facilities.
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Safety and welfare of the animals first! Thanks guys for all you do.

Yes thank you for everything yall do to keep the animals safe .. y'all keep safe and warm

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Thank u for keeping those Babies safe and warm!❤️

Thank you for all you do!

Thank you for ZOO LIGHTS. it was amazing this year!

Thank you, zoo team. Stay safe!

Mandy Rinker— really? Too cold? You’re from the Midwest girl

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thank you for all you do and keep the furry babies warm

Ty

Thank you for taking care of our precious animals that we love to come see!

Thank you for keeping those beautiful animals safe. 💕

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Thank you for all you do for these amazing animals!!

Go, Erika!!!

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