THIS JUST IN: Spotted Licorice Whatzit

It’s not a whatzit, it’s a baby tapir, with the kind of nose-snout-mini-trunk thingie, and the stripey-spotted fuzzy outsides, and it was born last January at the San Diego Place With the Buildings With the Animals In Them and the Stuff.

Sent by Marilyn T. over at NatGeoNewsWatch! with the e-mail and the whatever. Photo by Ken Bohn.



  1. Awesomeful baby!

  2. Rachael says:

    He’s all kinds of adorabuhl! Poor baby can’t seem to decide if he wants to be spotted or stripey. 🙂

  3. Wow! There’s something other than purple spotted elephants for my post-Saturday night cocktail sightings!!! YAY!

  4. Dr Anne says:

    Those spotty legs and rounded ears are my favourite features. Looks like he’s wearing some trendy winter flannelette pjs.

  5. Hi, baby tapir! You look a little bit Jackson Pollock. And a lotta cute!

  6. Best part: this babys name Tembikai translates to “Watermelon”!!!

  7. tracylee says:

    holy moly!

    I need some suh-weet polka-dotted legwarmers just like s/he has!

  8. Bebeh tapir knows that patterned tights are so in this year! Very soignee.

  9. do all baby tapirs have these markings and lose them as an adult?? or is this some other type of tapir?

    i wish i could see his tiny talio…that is, if tapirs have tails :s

  10. kibblenibble says:

    This baby’s expression of wonderment is enchanting. When you are a baby, everything is SO interesting!

  11. well i just looked up tapirs so no need to answer my questions 🙂

    and for those who are wondering – yes, all baby tapirs have these markings, but lose them as an adult, and yes, they do have a teeny tailio inglasis 🙂

  12. Hon Glad says:

    OK baby, We’ve finished dabbing your mozzy bites, with Chamomile lotion.

  13. “San Diego Place With the Buildings With the Animals In Them and the Stuff.”

    The answer to the line: “The zoo – –? What is it?” 😉

  14. I just watched “Airplane” last night, couldja tell? 😉

    [That’s not important now. – Ed.]

  15. Fluidstatic says:

    He’s SMILING. *cuddles*

  16. zeldapie says:

    Queen, I was kinda wondering… where are the boobs on this lil bebeh?
    I LURVE his little polka dots and smiling face. He looks like a stuffed toy, actually. I want to squeeze him!!

  17. MamaLana says:

    Such a sweetie!

  18. Well, isn’t he just the cutest spotted-striped little whatzit I ever did see! I love the look on his face. It’s like, “Mom? Mom? What’s this, Mom?”

  19. Lindsay says:

    Now THIS is cute. Yay camouflage!!!

  20. it’s a SNORRRRRRRRRGLE!!!

  21. CUTE

  22. relativity says:

    He has ear frosting. That’s pretty sweet.

  23. AuntieMame says:

    NOMTOM, are you sure it’s the “San Diego Place With the Buildings With the Animals In Them and the Stuff”? I thought it was the “Buildings and Stuff in San Diego with Animals in Them.” 😛

    And who says stripes and polka dots don’t go together?

  24. Missy P says:

    Mooooooommmmm? Can we get a tapir? Pleeeease? Seriously, I WANT ONE. How cute!

  25. @relativity – “ear frosting” – i love eet!

    ps – while doing my online research of tapirs i found out that this type of tapir (malayan tapir) keeps his ear frosting for life 😀 see:

  26. …whoops – i guess ALL tapirs have ear frosting *da da dan da* (the PSA more you know tune) 🙂

  27. PINK backstripes!?!?
    Truly a 30-pound Bertie Bassett liquorice allsort, avec ear frosting.

  28. Holy smokes! He’s a walking fashion faux paw but a very cute one!

  29. Teeny Gozer says:

    Didn’t one of his granddads star in the opening of 2001: A Space Odyssey?

    Daaaa, daaaaa, daaaaaaaaa! DAH-DAH!

    ::cue the drums::


  31. Queen of Dork says:

    On ears: munch. (crunch, munch, munch, munch. *gulp* crunch! munch, munch, munch. crunch. *ummmmmm. yummmmmmm* crunch) (please pass the salt). munch! num. num. nummers.

  32. Queen of Dork says:

    PS Kidding! Would not crunch the ears! (just nom them)

  33. needapuppy says:

    @29 Teeny Gozer
    Ok, now I have a picture for what an Eohippus (dawn horse, now Hyracotherium, or whatever) must have looked like.

  34. naturalady says:

    Woweeeee Zoweeeeeee what a delightful surprise creature.

    More designer-pants-on-elephant-like-baby-pigs at below (more than likely I don’t know how to imbed this link).

  35. Best roll-over title ever.

  36. maijasservant says:


  37. I guess the foot’s on the other hand now, isn’t it, Theo?!!! 😛

  38. I want a baby tapir following me around all cute wherever I go. I would be the most popular girl at the prom!

  39. Queen of Dork says:

    Speaking of Prom…I had THE TALK (again) with my teenage daughter. Zoiks.

  40. Queen of Dork says:

    Oh! help me!!! Help me!! I just fed my cat wet cat food and it got on my thumb. Crap! Nooooooo! I’m melting, I’m meltinggggg! Help! My thumb just burst into flame! Ewwwwww. yuuuuuck! HELP!!!!
    *cat tries to kill me. he’s flinging wet cat food at me*
    (help….me. cough, sneeze. cough) (blow nose) *hiccup* *eye twitch* ouch.


    …to keep clean…

    i hope he has some good grooming pals

  42. Is anyone else thinking of that one Futurama episode where Bender dates Planet Express Ship? No, just me? Okay, moving on…

  43. i’m pretty sure the odd animals in this world are the result of some serious, long ago inter species snorgling between what i’m pretty sure was a lot less species than we have now. get it? doesn’t matter, i get it. lol. i see a piganteater here!

  44. is it just me, or is that the cutest little buttocks you’ve ever seen?

  45. QoD: I read your posting too quickly, and thought it said “Speaking of Pron.” 😯

  46. Awwww… looks like he is trying hard to figure something tricky out. Like gravity… or water 🙂

  47. It looks like somebody colored him with sidewalk chalk.

  48. AlbertaGirl says:

    @corianne, that was literally the very first thing that popped into my mind! 😀

  49. It doesn’t even have to be licorice (my favourite candy), I still want to nom it!

  50. victoreia says:

    Eohippus! Good analogy!

    ….In other news: Caturday withdrawal. News at eleven.

  51. victoreia says:

    (…which, for me, is in half an hour…)

  52. ATanzer says:

    Is it just me, or do the adult Malayan Tapirs look like they’re wearing Marylin Monroe style strapless bathing suits?

  53. Peegy!

  54. Queen of Dork says:

    Theresa: Let’s do speak of pron! 🙂

  55. Queen of Dork says:

    Okay. So I’m watching a show about Ireland. I’ve been to many, many places in this world (Army brat) but I’ve never been to Ireland. It looks…WOW! So green! Seriously really green. I want to go there some day. Looks BEAUTIFUL!

  56. Katrina says:

    Even though this baybay is sooo well camouflaged they are endangered, huh?
    Love the noses that move around, and the yawns, well, yes, just too cute for words.

    No tailios? I would have thought they would have had cute spirally tailios like der piggelehs. Ah, nature.

    I understand they come four to a carton-I’ll take two cartons, please-in the extra-flexible-with-the-weather package, please. That’ll give Killer something to chase! We will take very good care of them and they will be unendangered.

  57. Queen of Dork says:

    Yay! Katrina’s in the house! How’s Killer?

  58. Queen of Dork says:

    By the way, SamKitty is sleeping and has put on hold his campaign to kill me. He kind of realized that I have to be warm and breathing in order for him to have food and water in his dishes. He’s such a cat.

  59. Theresa, I could tell you watched airplane. And don’t call me Shirley.

  60. Queen of Dork says:

    Saffron: Can I call you Laverne? 😉

  61. Queen of Dork says:

    shlemeil, shlmeizel, hops in hops incorporated! (or something like that)
    “Give us any chance, we’ll take it,
    Read us any rule we’ll break it…”

  62. Don’t forget that World Tapir Day is approaching rapidly – it’s 27 April:

  63. Queen of Dork says:

    Theresa: ‘kay, I”ll start:

    One day, thousands of years ago on Earth, the sky was filled with huge grey clouds and the air was very cold. Snow and ice fell on the ground and every living creature found some kind of dwelling (mostly caves) in which to shelter, but eventually as time went on, the atmosphere warmed and the snow melted. The long winter ended at last. Out from their holes ventured prons who….

  64. Resriechan says:

    later were known as prawn and still later known as shrimp.

    But I’m getting ahead of myself.

    The prons were the first creatures to come out from warm enclosed areas and explore the swampy areas where the sun was beginning to dry out some areas of the ground and the debris there. Prons had antennae at the front of their heads which allowed them to avoid any obstacles ahead…..

  65. Queen of Dork says:

    ….and there were many obstacles the prons had to scale as the land was overrun with….

  66. Queen of Dork says:

    He’s so adorable! Looks like he’s saying, “baaaaahhhh! I can make a noise like a sheep. baaaaahhhhhhh”

  67. “Schlemeil, schlamazel, hassenpfeffer incorporated”
    Killer is a bit perkier, but her ears are still a worriment. Her eating had returned to Corgi-ravenous and as I was downstairs in the kitchen and asked “Does anyone want any Muenster Cheese?” she came down trotting for her cheese, so her hearing hasn’t been effected. Thank you so much for asking. I think she still gets a fever every once ins awhile, (her ears turn pinker inside). Peanut butter on my finger is the best for giving her her (rather large) antibiotic. Now, what in the world is up with Samkitty? Seems a bit homocidal, even with all things feline considered. Has his schedule or food been changed recently? Or, Spring Fever! That could be it! MY weight loss regime goes like this AM: a Yoplait regular (not ‘lite’) yogurt, at lunch either the same or a caloric equivalent. Dinner is what I usually eat, only less of it. Once in a great while a cookie passes my lips as I am, and always be, a cookie person. I have many medications that must be taken three times a day, all of which give me (the sleepies, the shakes (figure that one out) or digestive upset, but pain relief, so I put up with the other stuff. So all in all I am pleased, and, by the time Killer’s smaller bigger brother goes to college in June for an orientation, I won’t be ‘the fat Mommy’ anymore! One fluffin’ day at a time!

  68. Queen of Dork says:

    Katrina: Hi! I’m glad that Killer is better. How did you know I need to loose weight?! SamKitty is fine. He’s laying on my daughter’s bed having a bath. I’m not extremely over weight but would like to loose 10 or 20 pounds or so. How did you know that?

  69. Yay San Diego Zoo!!! I will keep an eye out for this baby when I go next Saturday!

  70. Katrina says:

    Laurel, Please come back with a full reconnaissance.

    QoD-who of us isn’t just a tad, shall we say, over upholstered? ME in three more months!! BWAAHAHHAHA! Join me! Yoplait makes many many flavors of ‘gurt.

    I’m glad that Samkitty has calmed down. A nice, relaxing bath can do that. Even if it is with spit.

  71. Awwww…. wut a sweet bebbeh….polka dots and stripes don’t usually go together, but on this little guy they look awesome…..! 😆

  72. Queen of Dork says:

    Katrina: Yeah. Can you imagine bathing in your own spit? Gross. Not only would that take forever, but I guess I would be pretty tired and ready for a nap after that. Or a shower. Or a trip to a psychiatrist.

  73. Resriechan says:

    Hi Q — how was YOUR (non-spit) nap?
    How are yer SINAII???

    (giggle over Pseudo-“plural” for “sinus”-es)

  74. I LOVE these little guys. so cute!!

  75. Fleurdamour says:

    I want to SNORGLE him. More badly than I have ever wanted to snorgle anything. Ever.

  76. Fleurdamour says:

    Oh! His name is WATERMELON?! I am going to die of ‘Teh Cute.’

  77. Look how dainty her back hooves are!

  78. Tapirs SEEM cute enough….

    Just don’t fall asleep after looking at em