New Ring-Tailed Lemur Baby at the Honolulu Zoo

The month-old ring-tailed lemur is the first for a new couple at the zoo.

Photo: Rod Kuba, Courtesy of the Honolulu Zoo

Mom, Remi, with her new baby ring-tailed lemur.

Less than a year after arriving in Waikiki, two endangered ring-tailed lemurs are new parents. Mom Remi, 4, and Dad Finn, 3, gave birth on June 10. Remi and the baby have been separated from the dad because the zoo says “Remi is very protective of her baby.” You can see all three in the zoo’s Primate Islands exhibit.

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The birth is an even bigger celebration because lemurs are considered to be some of the most endangered mammals in the world. The International Union for Conservation of Nature said that as many as 90% of all of the species could be facing extinction within the next two decades as their forests in Madagascar are cut down for wood or converted into agricultural land.

Here is a little more about the ring-tailed lemur.

  • Each lemur’s tail has 13 alternating white and black bands.
  • Unlike other lemurs which spend most of their time in trees, ring-tailed lemurs stay on the ground about 40% of the time.
  • Ring-tailed lemurs can weigh up to six pounds. Their tails grow as much as two feet long.
  • They eat leaves, flowers and insects. They can cover up to 3-and-a-half miles every day searching for food.
  • Infants make a soft purring sound.
  • Babies cling to their mothers’ bellies for the first two weeks. Then they often ride on their moms’ backs. They sleep and nurse with the mom until for about five to six months.

Photo: Rod Kuba, Courtesy of the Honolulu Zoo

  • Adults live in groups ranging in size from three to 25 mammals. When traveling, ring-tailed lemur howls can be heard from more than half-a-mile away. That is how the groups mark their territory.
  • They love to stretch out and sunbathe.
  • Males have a spur on each wrist gland that they use to pierce branches so they can mark it with their scents.
  • Females usually have their first baby once they are three years old then have a baby a year after that. All adult females help raise every baby.
  • Ring-tailed lemurs typically live 20 to 27 years.