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'Thought I was hearing a horse': Tapir overtakes surprised cyclist on Punggol PCN

'Thought I was hearing a horse': Tapir overtakes surprised cyclist on Punggol PCN
A tapir running along Punggol PCN overtook a shocked cyclist.
PHOTO: Facebook/Pong Posadas

A man's routine morning cycle took a thrilling twist when a Malayan tapir dashed past him.

Taking to Facebook to share his exciting encounter, cyclist Pong Posadas posted a video of the tapir racing towards the direction of Lor Halus bridge along the Punggol Park Connector Network (PCN), after overtaking him at 6.25am on Sunday (Sept 10).

"I thought I was hearing a horse coming from behind me," he wrote in his caption. "I just slowed down and let it pass and overtook me: It was a tapir!!!"

Shocked yet amazed by the sight, Posadas continued cycling behind, making sure to keep a distance of eight to 10 metres away while filming the tapir.


In the 36-seconds long video, the tapir can be seen sprinting along the PCN path before slowing to a stop and turning back to glance at a startled Posadas who quickly stopped and ended the video.

The cyclist clarified in his edited caption that he was not chasing the tapir, which "was already running fast before it passed him".

Responding to comments by curious netizens, he also shared that the tapir had retreated into the water through an opening in the fences shortly afterwards.

Speaking to AsiaOne, Posadas shared that he "kept my distance for my safety" while filming the tapir, and slowed down because he was scared.

When the tapir stopped running, Posadas said he "quickly did a U-turn and went farther and watched it from afar". He estimated that he had backtracked a "good 20 metres away".

Similar sighting in July

The most recent sighting of a Malayan tapir was on July 22, where it was spotted trotting along the path of the Punggol PCN opposite Coney Island.

The tapir most likely swam to Singapore from Malaysia, said the Animal Concerns Research and Education Society (Acres) then.

The previously last recorded sighting of a tapir in Singapore was in Changi in 2016.

Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum officer Marcus Chua told The Straits Times in 2016 that such a sighting was "extremely rare for Singapore".

Malayan tapirs are seldom seen here, and are an endangered species.

To report a sighting of a wild animal in places that are not their natural habitats, call the Acres' 24-hour wildlife crime and rescue hotline at 9783 7782.

ALSO READ: 'It's like meeting a rare Pokemon': Woman spots endangered pangolin wandering around Toa Payoh

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