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Tapir, Baird's
Baird's tapir (Tapirus bairdii), also known as the Central American tapir, is the largest of the American tapirs and the largest indigenous mammal in Central America. Tapirs are well known for their elongated, flexible upper lip that is extended into a proboscis, resembling a shorter version of an elephant's trunk. These animals are 'living fossils'; the group has changed little in body shape over the past 35 million years, although recent evidence suggests the proboscis may be a more recent addition. Baird's tapir has a barrel-shaped body and stocky legs. Adults have bristly, short dark hair and dark-grey coloured skin, apart from the pale grey-yellow cheeks and throat, and the white-tipped ears. Newborn tapirs have a reddish brown coat with white stripes and spots. Tapirs support their weight on three spread-out toes on the back feet and four on the front.

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