Project Description

Ring-tailed Lemur

Lemur catta

Aquarium Location

Mountains

Habitat

Live in rainforests and deciduous forests, especially riparian areas (forests along rivers and streams) and dry scrub areas.

Range

Southern Madagascar

Diet

Lemurs are opportunistic omnivores feeding mostly on various leaves, flowers, stems and fruits, but they will feed on insects and spiders as well.

Fun Facts

Lemurs live in groups called troops. The females are the dominant ones within this society.
Relying on olfactory communication (spreading scents) to mark their territory, male lemurs have “stink fights” by waving their tails at each other after they have been scented by their wrist glands.
Unlike most other lemurs, ring-tails spend roughly half of their time on the ground where they walk around on all fours.
Ring-tailed lemurs enjoy sunbathing and sit facing the sun with their arms and legs outstretched like they are trying to get a tan.
Lemurs communicate through closed mouth clicks and open mouth calls. They have calls to warn about predators, ward off other troops, find each other, claim territories and indicate contentment.

Cool Adaptation

Ring-tailed Lemurs possess a set of lower teeth that resemble a comb. They use this “tooth-comb” for grooming and as a feeding tool.

Conservation Connection

Habitat loss is the main contributor to lemurs being threatened. Rapid human population growth is driving lemurs out of their native areas. Slash and burn agriculture has wiped out much of the forest lemurs called home. Only roughly 15% of Madagascar’s original forests remain.