National Geographic : 1952 Nov
Anteater's Tail Is a Fifth Arm The Siemel children, out for a ride, spotted a ta mandua, the lesser ant cater, and tried to rope it. Their father finally con vinced them it was too grown up and bad tempered to make a good pet. The tamandua's razor sharp claws can inflict nasty wounds. At night it raids anthills and termite infested logs, licking up the insects with its long tongue. By day the animal wants to do nothing but sleep. Tapir's Cousins Are Horse and Rhino Biggest native mammal inSouth America, the veg etarian tapir may reach 500 to 700 pounds. Na tives prize its flesh for quality as well as quantity. Apparently near-sighted, the tapir becomes dan gerous only in its tendency to rush off madly in any direction. Chief enemies are men and jaguars. To evade them both, the animal relies on camouflage, speed, and ability to swim. This young beast soon will lose stripes and spots for the adult's dull coat of brownish black. The Largest Rodent Grows to 150 Pounds South America's capy bara resembles a guinea pig swollen to nightmarish proportions. Hunted for its hide, which makes ad mirable gloves, the animal shuns undue publicity in the jungle. It never strays far from water and is always ready to plunge in and disappear. This fellow lived near the Siemels' camp. They overcame its shyness by letting it strictly alone. In a few years it became suffi ciently friendly to waddle along the creek bed and pose for a close-up.