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The black-and-white ruffed lemur is undeniably enchanting and in the wild, they are found in Madagascar and nowhere else on earth. Weighing in at around 4 kilograms this one of the largest living lemur species on the planet. As with many primates, their name draws inspiration from their appearance, and the black-and-white ruffed lemur is no exception. They have black and white fur with a distinctive white gruff around their necks. And if this species isn’t visually striking enough, it also has wide, round, and bright yellow eyes.

Except for the aptly named howler monkey, black-and-white ruffed lemurs have the loudest call of all primates and can be heard from up to a half-mile away. Large and loud, they prefer the upper part of the canopy.

Fun Fact:  A group of lemurs is known as a “congress of lemurs.”

These lemurs are frugivores as they feed almost exclusively on fruits. As frugivores, they swallow large seeds that are later excreted onto the forest floor making them incredibly important for the forests where they reside. Thus, this lemur is responsible for distributing seeds around their habitat and contributing to its growth. Therefore, if the ruffed lemurs disappear, tree regeneration could decline as well. However, they will also feed on seeds and nectar at different times of the year using their long tongues to reach inside flowers to lap up the nectar. As the lemur drinks the nectar, the plant’s pollen sticks to the lemur’s coat and is dispersed from tree to tree. It is this affinity for nectar that earned them the title as the largest pollinators on earth.

black and white ruffed lemur charles j sharp c 900 x
Black and white ruffed lemurs are highly sociable animals mostly living in family groups of around five individuals although group size can vary from sometimes just two up to 16 strong. Regardless of the group size, each lays claim to a home range, the boundary of which is made clear whenever one group strays too close to the other. Another distinctive feature that set them apart is their long nimble tails to help them balance in the treetops.

These lemurs’ playful inquisitive nature and fluffy faces make them simply irresistible to watch as they love exploring their environment with their noses always on the lookout for a fruity meal.

 

 Sources:

Duke Lemur Centre

 Smithsonian's National Zoo & Conservation Biology Zoo

Arkive.Org

Projects On The Go

Monkey Sanctuary HP 1Conservation in Southern Africa is rapidly becoming unsustainable without the active involvement of the community, especially the younger, more active generation. The Bushbabies Monkey Sanctuary and The Elephant Sanctuary group strongly believe that we have to get the younger members of communities involved to instill a passion for the environment and wildlife in them through education.

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Pet Monkeys... Really A Good Idea?

monkey as petI'll introduce you to Joyce, for example. A young female capuchin, she was rather pampered with child-like paraphernalia; a dress and a small hat around her head. Cute, indeed. She had been with her "foster" family since only two months old, bought straight from a breeder. The couple who owned her did not have children, and so decided to substitute the missing link with a primate, albeit a bit smaller...and with sharper teeth.

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