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Ring-Tailed Lemurs at the Hattiesburg Zoo

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The ring-tailed lemur is an amazing mammal

They are very interesting creatures that God put on this earth. One of my favorite characteristics about this animal is there big bushy cute tail. The ring-tailed lemurs scientific family is Lemuridae.The ring-tailed lemur gets its name from the neat ringed pattern on the fur on the tail. They have gray or rosy brown backs with lighter gray or brown hind legs and have white stomachs.

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Ring-tailed lemurs are charismatic primates that inhabit a variety of habitats throughout southern Madagascar. Although ring-tailed lemurs will climb, this species spends more time on the ground than any other lemur species. The ring-tailed lemur is easily recognized by its long black and white ringed tail that is used for balance, signaling to other group members, and for territorial communication during stink fights when the lemurs will wipe scents from glands on their wrists, on their tails, and then flick the scent at each other. Ring-tailed lemurs live in groups of up to 30 individuals, with a dominant female member leading the group. Ring-tailed lemurs primarily eat fruit and leaves, their favorite being fruit from the tamarind tree

They will also occasionally eat invertebrates and on rare occasions, small vertebrate species. All lemur species are endangered due to loss of habitat from deforestation. There are approximately only 2,000 ring-tailed lemurs remaining in the wild. Over 90% of Madagascar’s forests have been depleted due to conversion of the land for agricultural purposes. The Good Zoo participates in the ring-tailed lemur Species Survival Plan breeding program with other Association of Zoos and Aquariums accredited institutions to ensure a sustainable population of this rare species in human care.

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In either case, mating between these lemurs typically takes place in a short period in mid-April, with the young being born around September. There is careful timing so that it ensures the young are weaned from their mothers right when the food sources become most plentiful. They sometimes will give birth to twins, but a single infant is most common. The baby will cling to the underside of mom at first, and after a few weeks it will move and ride on their mother’s back more and begin to explore the environment

It reaches sexual maturity around two and a half to three years of age, giving birth once per year.

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