How time races by! It's been a full year since we posted to the World Tapir Day blog. Events in the world give pause for thought - increasingly dire predictions for the climate in the coming decades and the lack of time to radically change human behaviour, a shift towards the political right in some countries that has led to the removal of environmental protections and increased destruction, and even larger demands on resources as populations continue to grow and developing countries' standard of living increase.
Whilst the direction of the world continues to look bleak, there are some glimmers of hope. A growing number of people - especially the younger generations - are starting to agitate against the climate inaction, there is increased recognition that life on this planet cannot continue how it is if humanity does not change direction, and the environment will collapse without significant intervention - and with it, human society. Whether matters change quickly enough remain to be seen, but there is hope.
In our little patch of the global conservation story - awareness raising for the four extant species of tapirs - increased recognition of the importance tapirs play in their habitats is very pleasing to see. A widely reported recent study highlighted the importance of tapirs in helping degraded rainforests recover. By spending much longer in degraded areas than in pristine rainforest, tapirs' role as seed dispersers - through defecating them - more seeds are therefore distributed. In addition, by being defecated in areas with less tree coverage, more seeds germinate. We've been saying it since the first World Tapir Day in 2008 - that protecting tapirs helps protect the environment and contributes towards reducing the impact of climate change. The study's authors agree with us - from the linked report:
Protecting species and their habitats is only one piece of the climate change battle - but it's an important one. It's one with which we can all assist. Through our choices as consumers, we can:
On other topics, whilst we may not have an especially active website, our social media accounts are far more active:
On these sites you will find a daily stream of tapir news, other relevant content, and many photos of tapir calves - yes, we know that some people are into tapirs only because of the baby tapirs! At this juncture, I give my utmost thanks and appreciation to Sarah C. who manages our Facebook page and has recently taken on the Instagram feed. She has been doing so for approaching a decade, and do so tirelessly and with great enjoyment, such is her passion for tapirs. Without her commitment, World Tapir Day would have fallen into a dark hole many years ago.
The World Tapir Day blog. Posts about World Tapir Day, tapirs, conservation, the environment and random tapir-related topics.