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Tama treat: Baby Malayan tapir goes on display at Tokyo zoo

Kanae the Malayan tapir calf is seen at Tama Zoological Park in the Tokyo suburban city of Hino on Dec. 10, 2019, the first day she went on public display. (Mainichi/Minako Saito)

HINO, Tokyo -- A newborn Malayan tapir calf, a rare Southeast Asian animal, was put on public display at Tama Zoological Park here on Dec. 10.

The female cub was born on Nov. 27 to mother Yume, 16, and father Ken, 8. She was named Kanae by a zookeeper in the hope that "the dream she will grow up healthily will come true."

Weighing 18.15 kilograms as of Dec. 9, Kanae actively runs around in her enclosure and puts hay in her mouth as Yume cares for her third cub. A total of six tapirs, three males and three females including Kanae, are now kept at the facility.

Wild Malayan tapirs live alone and inhabit rain forests and wetlands with grassy areas in southern Myanmar, the Malay Peninsula and Sumatra Island. Their young calves have white dotted lines on their black bodies but the pattern changes to a two-tone color of white and black around half a year after they are born, according to the zoo.

(Japanese original by Minako Saito, Tama General Bureau)

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