Crowned lemur

Lemurs are found only on the island of Madagascar off the coast of Africa. They are different to other primates due to their dog-like muzzle and wet nose. Crowned lemurs have a grey-brown coat with the females being slightly lighter in colour with a white front. They are named after the crown of orange fur on their heads. In males there is also a black stripe across the top of the head. Crowned lemurs live in groups of 5-15 individuals but will split off into smaller groups to find food. Bonds in the group are strengthened through grooming.
Lemurs lack the ability to manipulate their fingers like other primates so instead groom with their bottom teeth, which stick out from the jaw creating a comb. Crowned lemurs are polygynous so females will mate with multiple males during the breeding season (May-June). Females give birth to one or two infants at the start of the rainy season to coincide with higher food availability. Infants are nursed until around six months of age.

 

The majority of the crowned lemurs diet consists of fruit. Despite living high up in the canopy, they will descend to collect fallen fruit. When ripe fruit is limited they will also eat leaves and insects too.
The main threat facing crowned lemurs is habitat loss due to logging, agriculture and forest fires. The largest populations occur in four protected reserves. However, the reserves are fragmented restricting home ranges and hunting still occurs for bush meat and the pet trade.

 

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