Research Article

The mountain tapir, endangered ‘flagship’ species of the high Andes

Craig C. Downera1 c1

a1 School of Biological Sciences, University College of North Wales, Bangor, Gwynedd LL57 2UW, UK.


The mountain tapir has already disappeared from parts of its range in the high Andes of South America and remaining populations are severely threatened by hunting and habitat destruction. With an estimated population of fewer than 2500 individuals, urgent measures are necessary to secure a future for the species. This paper presents an overview of the species throughout its range as well as some of the main results of the author's studies on tapir ecology. Finally, a plea is made for conservation action in Sangay National Park, which is one of the species's main strongholds.


c1 PO Box 456, Minden, NV 89423, USA.