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Alaotran Gentle Lemur

Alaotran Gentle Lemur

Alaotran gentle lemurs have a dark grey, dense, woolly coat with a chestnut muzzle and short ears. Their hands, feet and tail are used for grasping and balancing, which allows them to walk along the reed stalks in their lakeside home.

Male Alaotran gentle lemurs weigh 1.4kg, whereas females weigh slightly more at 1.6kg and usually measure between 30cm to 40cm tall.

This species of lemur usually go about their activities in groups of 2 to 9, with the males active during the day and night. Bonds between groups are usually maintained through social grooming. They defend their territories through vocalisation, displays and scent-markings.

Females give birth to a single offspring, which they carry on their back for a short while after birth.


Diet

Alaotran gentle lemurs are herbivores, meaning they feed on a variety of marsh vegetation such as reeds and grasses. Papyrus leaves make up the majority of their diet.


Habitat

You will find this lemur around the largest lake in Madagascar, Lake Alaotra. They are the only primate to have adapted to living in reed and papyrus beds.


Conservation

The Alaotran gentle lemur is classified as Critically Endangered. A big threat to this species is loss of habitat, as the areas they are usually found in are gradually being converted into rice paddy fields.

Their habitat is also being destroyed by humans burning the marshlands in order to catch fish and provide areas to graze cattle. The reeds within this habitat are collected to make products such as mats and fences. Other threats to the Alaotran gentle lemur include being hunted for food and caught to be sold within the pet trade.
 
You can learn more about the Alaotran gentle lemurs' conservation status on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species website.


Our lemur house was built in partnership with

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