Drusillas Park in Alfriston is celebrating the birth of a rare black lemur in the award-winning zoo’s walkthrough enclosure, Lemurland.
Proud parents, Lotfi and Clementine welcomed the new addition to their family on 10th May and since then the baby bundle has been settling in and getting to know the nine cheeky ring-tailed lemurs with whom they share their home, as well as older siblings Zebedee and Princess Charlotte.
In the wild, black lemurs are native to the Island of Madagascar where they are considered vulnerable due to hunting and deforestation. Clementine and Lotfi were introduced in 2010 as part of the European Endangered Species Programme, arriving from zoos in Portugal and Tunisia respectively.
The baby is growing in confidence daily under the close protection of Clementine. For the time being however, it is happier hitch-hiking a ride on mum.
It is unclear at present whether the new arrival is male or female but this will become evident over the next few weeks due to the strong sexual dimorphism in colour within this species. Males are all black with striking orange eyes, whereas females are brown with long whitish ear tufts.
Zoo Manager, Sue Woodgate: “We are delighted to welcome another lemur baby to the Park. Clementine is an excellent mum and has a great deal of experience. Babies are always very popular with our visitors but our black lemur baby is also an invaluable addition to this beautiful and threatened species.”