First lemur of its kind to be born at Zoo for years

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A GENTLE lemur has been born at Jersey Zoo for the first time in 14 years.

Picture: DURRELL (26910677)

Miora, an Alaotran gentle lemur, gave birth on 20 December, with the organisation keeping the news under wraps over the past few weeks.

However, yesterday the Zoo announced the birth on its social media accounts.

‘We are DELIGHTED to announce the birth of a beautiful Alaotran gentle lemur!’ the statement said.

‘This is the first Alaotran gentle lemur to be born at the zoo in 14 years.

‘As the keepers are working with a strictly hands-off approach, we do not yet know if it is male or female, but we will announce the newborn’s name in due course.’

Alaotran gentle lemurs are classed as critically endangered and in the wild live only in the papyrus and reed beds surrounding Madagascar’s largest lake, Lac Alaotra.

Known locally as ‘bandro’, it is the only primate in the world whose habitat is confined to wetlands, and Jersey Zoo says it is currently being ‘eaten to extinction’.

A captive breeding and research programme was started at Durrell in 1990 and now involves eight other zoos around the world. It is designed to act as a ‘safety net’ for the population should it die out in the wild.

The birth of the new lemur comes two months following the birth of a baby gorilla at the zoo to mother Bahasha and father Badongo.

Lucy Stephenson

By Lucy Stephenson

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