Mongoose lemur

(Eulemur mongoz)

Lemurs are prosimians and are part of a unique variety of animals that is indigenous to the island of Madagascar. The locals call lemurs 'forest spirits' because of their awestruck red and yellow glowing eyes when light is cast upon them in the night. It is important to protect their natural habitat to prevent the animals themselves declining as the rainforest around them is doing.

CHARACTERISTICS

Habitat
Forests in north-western Madagascar
and the Comoros

Diet
Fruit, leaves, flowers, insects

Status
critically endangered

Weight
1.2 kg up to 1.8 kg

Brooding/gestation time:
approx. 125 to 130 days

Achievable age
over 30 years

Changing with the seasons

Mongoose lemurs have an adaptable lifestyle. During the dry season the primates are mainly nocturnal but when the temperatures drop they become active during the day instead.

Not to be sniffed at!

Mongoose lemurs communicate using a scent secreted from their anal glands. This is also how they mark their territory.

Did you know?

  • Male and female mongoose lemurs are easily distinguishable. While both have fluffy beards on their cheeks, the males’ facial hair is orange and the females’ is white.
  • Mongoose lemurs are critically endangered due to hunting and forest clearance.