Critically endangered lemurs arrive at Belfast Zoo

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By David Hunter

Three critically endangered lemurs have arrived at Belfast Zoo in the latest stage of it's breeding programme.

White-belted ruffed lemurs are found on the island of Madagascar, which boasts more than 100 different species of the animal. 

However the diverse eco systems of Madagascar have become one of the most threatened in the world. 

Belfast Zoo first welcomed the lemur's in 2009, when Wakka and Mianta arrived from Newquay Zoo in Cornwall and Beasancon Zoo in France.

Some research has estimated that if the rate of deforestation in Madagascar continues, lemurs could be extinct within 25 years.

The pair are part of a global breeding programme and have welcomed more than 10 infants since arriving in Northern Ireland. 

Zoo staff now hope that members of the public will help welcome the three latest arrivals.  

Senior keeper, Allan Galway, said “The triplets were born on 7 April 2017.  However, ruffed lemurs are different from other lemur species, as their babies don’t cling to the mother.

"Babies are either carried in their mother’s mouth or left in a safe nest in a nearby tree. 

"The triplets are now becoming more confident and mischievous and are starting to leave the nest to explore their surroundings.

" This has given us the opportunity to discover the sex of the new arrivals, three little females, and we now need the public’s help to name them. "

You can submit suggestions on the zoo website or by completing a form onsite.

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