Maruja the tapir


Maruja is one of the rescued animals that we are happy to have been able to help raise until she was ready to live in her natural environment in freedom.

Maruja is a South American tapir, and she arrived to our center on December 2017. Before then, she was a "pet" to an elderly local resident, who upon realizing that they wouldn't be able to properly care for her, did the right thing and contacted RAREC.

Maruja lived in a habitat custom made for her, which has a pool where she liked to swim. Maruja loves the rain, and she loved getting brushed and massaged by our volunteers. Her friendly demeanor made her very popular with the volunteers!

Breakfast time for Maruja!
Spa time was Maruja's favorite! She got brushed, massaged, and showered with attention.
Volunteer Eleyah Melamed from Israel, and Maruja.
Volunteer Maja Krivec from Eslovenia, and Maruja.

Tapir's diet is based on 100% leaves and fruits. When she was mature enough, she started to live in semi-captivity, so she could get her own food in the RAREC plantations, before to release her completely. We make sure to always have food for when she returns to visit us.

If you want to volunteer with us and be part of this experience rehabilitating and returning future rescued tapirs to the environment, you can contact RAREC Administrator at, and we will send you more details about our programs.