KEEPERS at Dublin Zoo are hoping that Cupid’s arrow will strike the latest addition to its breeding programme.
Rio, a two-year-old female tapir from Brazil, is being introduced to the zoo’s male counterpart Marmaduke in the hope that they will hit it off and breed.
The nocturnal mammals are native to the tropics of Malaysia and South and Central America but they are being threatened with extinction due to the encroachment of development.
The creatures roamed throughout Europe and North America up until the end of the Ice Age and haven’t evolved much over the past 20 million years.
The zoo will also be playing matchmaker in the coming weeks as it organises another pairing between its male red panda Chota and Angelina, from the Chester Zoo in the UK.
Meanwhile, the zoo will be hosting a series of special talks this Valentine’s weekend.