Tapir rescued after being trapped in Kuantan school drain

KUANTAN: Civil Defence Force (APM) and Department of Wildlife and National Parks (Perhilitan) personnel took about five hours to rescue a Malayan tapir, trapped in a drain at SMK Sungai Soi, near here today.

The 300kg male tapir which had strayed into the premises in search of food, was eating some jackfruit leaves near the drain when it is believed to have lost its footing and slipped into the drain.

The Malayan Tapir suffered cuts to its body and will be treated. - NSTP/FARIZUL HAFIZ AWANG
The Malayan Tapir suffered cuts to its body and will be treated. – NSTP/FARIZUL HAFIZ AWANG

District APM officer Captain (PA) Zubaidah Said said the department received a call from the school over the trapped mammal at about noon and dispatched seven personnel to the scene.

The Malayan Tapir will be released into its natural habitat once it recovers. -NSTP/FARIZUL HAFIZ AWANG
The Malayan Tapir will be released into its natural habitat once it recovers. -NSTP/FARIZUL HAFIZ AWANG

“Our team spent about 30 minutes trying to bring the animal out of the drain before we alerted Perhilitan. The rescue operations took about five hours before the tapir was brought out using the webbing harness,” she said.

Meanwhile, State Perhilitan director Rozidan Md Yasin said the animal suffered some cuts on its body as a result of its movements along the concrete drain.

After five hours, the Malayan Tapir was rescued by personnel from Civil Defence Force (APM) and Department of Wildlife and National Parks (Perhilitan). - NSTP/FARIZUL HAFIZ AWANG
After five hours, the Malayan Tapir was rescued by personnel from Civil Defence Force (APM) and Department of Wildlife and National Parks (Perhilitan). – NSTP/FARIZUL HAFIZ AWANG

“Based on our observations, the animal did not suffer any injuries due to the fall.. Our team will treat the cuts and if it is not serious, the animal will be released into its natural habitat,” he said when contacted.

He said checks revealed that the endangered Malayan tapir (Tapirus indicus) was earlier eating leaves from a jackfruit tree near the school drain before it landed in the drain.

By : T.N.Alagesh – NST

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