|Timmy exploring his new home at the Los Angeles Zoo.|
Timmy the “tipping” tapir has arrived at his new home at the Los Angeles Zoo, after being shipped from the Palm Beach Zoo. The ultimate goal of his new, permanent residence, is to meet a future mate for the survival of his species, as part of a specialized breeding program.
The sixteen-month old, 300-pound Baird’s tapir arrived in California, after a 15-hour journey that took him 2,670 miles from coast-to-coast within one day. Accompanied by two of his caretakers, he left the Fort Lauderdale International Airport early Friday morning, and arrived at the Los Angeles International Airport Friday evening. He will remain in standard medical quarantine for thirty days.
Timmy rose to fame after he was abandoned at birth by his mother, and then inexplicably began falling over. After extensive medical testing, it was discovered that he suffered from a double ear infection, which has since been cured.
Palm Beach Zoo Veterinarian Dr. Genevieve Dumonceaux accompanied Timmy all the way from Florida to California.
“The staff at the Los Angeles Zoo already love him,” said Dr. Dumonceaux. “He seems very happy.”
Timmy will eventually become part of the Los Angeles Zoo’s “Rainforest of the Americas” exhibit, which is set to open later this year. He will also meet his future girlfriend, Tootsie, who is also a native Floridian, currently living at the Brevard County Zoo.
In his new forever home, he will provide a resource for the public to learn more about endangered tapirs. Accredited zoos move animals around to strive for 90% genetic diversity, to help ensure they don’t go extinct.
“Healthy zoo populations mean that they can be ambassadors for their wild cousins,” said Jan Steele, General Curator for the Palm Beach Zoo. “Timmy’s move, and his new permanent home, can help to teach our guests how they can affect conservation by making simple changes in their buying habits and behaviors.”