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Ring-tailed lemurs are from the island of Madagascar and are currently listed as Near Threatened on the IUCN Red List for Endangered Species due to loss of habitat. They are one of many unique animals that call Expedition Madagascar at Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo.
Ring-tailed lemurs are easily identified by their long black and white striped tails. They are one of the most vocal primates using different alarm class based on threats. Ring-tailed lemurs also use scent marking as a means of communication. Their diet consists of fruit, leaves, flowers, tree bark and occasionally insects and small vertebrates. They live in groups of 6 to 24 animals called troops. When ring-tailed lemurs travel through their home range, they keep their tails held high in the air like flags to keep the troop together. Infants are carried ventrally (on the chest) for the first two weeks and then carried dorsally (on the back) until they reach around four weeks old. Once they are around five to six months old they become independent.
Be sure to check out the new exhibit, Expedition Madagascar, opening on May 7, 2010 to learn more about these cool animals!