Fat-tailed dwarf lemur

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Fat-tailed dwarf lemur[1]
Cheirogaleus-medius.jpg
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Primates
Family: Cheirogaleidae
Genus: Cheirogaleus
Species: C. medius
Binomial name
Cheirogaleus medius
É. Geoffroy, 1812
Cheirogaleus medius range map.svg
Fat-tailed Dwarf Lemur range
Cheirogaleus adipicaudatus range map.svg
Southern fat-tailed dwarf lemur range (formerly considered as separate species)
Synonyms
  • minor É. Geoffroy, 1812
  • samati Grandidier, 1867

The fat-tailed dwarf lemur (Cheirogaleus medius), also known as the lesser dwarf lemur, western fat-tailed dwarf lemur, or spiny forest dwarf lemur, is one of the smallest primates. It is endemic to Madagascar.

Hibernation[edit]

Recent research has shown that C. medius hibernates (or estivates), even though in the tropical winter of Madagascar, temperatures remain high. It is the first tropical mammal and only primate in which hibernation has been demonstrated. However, the Malagasy winter is dry, and it appears that the lemur is avoiding the drought. It can hibernate for seven months. Unlike animals that hibernate in temperate regions, the lemur does not control its body temperature while hibernating, and if the tree hole in which it is sleeping is not well insulated, its body temperature fluctuates in accordance with the outside temperature.[3] During torpor, this lemur has been found to periodically enter REM sleep; non-REM sleep has not been observed, a pattern opposite that found in hibernating ground squirrels.[4] The REM sleep episodes occurred during periods of higher ambient temperature (averaging 27 C, versus an average of 20 C during nonsleeping intervals while in torpor).[4]

Like other fat-tailed lemurs, C. medius is able to store fat in its tail, and this provides a source of energy during its period of dormancy.

Taxonomy[edit]

Cheirogaleus adipicaudatus

Between 2000 and 2009, a population of dwarf lemur was known as a separate species, the southern fat-tailed dwarf lemur (Cheirogaleus adipicaudatus). It was described by taxonomist Colin Groves as having a pelage coloration that is dark dorsally and gray ventrally, with a vaguely expressed dorsal stripe running down the back, a relatively short white median facial stripe, and black eye-rings.[5] However, in 2009, Groeneveld et al demonstrated genetically that Cheirogaleus adipicaudatus was a synonym of Cheirogaleus medius, so the southern fat-tailed dwarf Lemur is no longer recognized as a species.[6][7]

Traits[edit]

This species is nocturnal, with a diet of insects, other small animals, fruits and flowers The adult lemur mass is 160 grams. [8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Groves, C. P. (2005). "Order Primates". In Wilson, D. E.; Reeder, D. M. Mammal Species of the World (3rd ed.). Johns Hopkins University Press. p. 112. ISBN 978-0-8018-8221-0. OCLC 62265494. 
  2. ^ Andriaholinirina, N., Baden, A., Blanco, M., Chikhi, L., Cooke, A., Davies, N., Dolch, R., Donati, G., Ganzhorn, J., Golden, C., Groeneveld, L.F., Hapke, A., Irwin, M., Johnson, S., Kappeler, P., King, T., Lewis, R., Louis, E.E., Markolf, M., Mass, V., Mittermeier, R.A., Nichols, R., Patel, E., Rabarivola, C.J., Raharivololona, B., Rajaobelina, S., Rakotoarisoa, G., Rakotomanga, B., Rakotonanahary, J., Rakotondrainibe, H., Rakotondratsimba, G., Rakotondratsimba, M., Rakotonirina, L., Ralainasolo, F.B., Ramahaleo, T., Ranaivoarisoa, J.F., Randrianahaleo, S.I., Randrianambinina, B., Randrianarimanana, L., Randrianasolo, H., Randriatahina, G., Rasamimananana, H., Rasolofoharivelo, T., Rasoloharijaona, S., Ratelolahy, F., Ratsimbazafy, J., Ratsimbazafy, N., Razafindraibe, H., Razafindramanana, J., Rowe, N., Salmona, J., Seiler, M., Volampeno, S., Wright, P., Youssouf, J., Zaonarivelo, J. & Zaramody, A. (2014). "Cheirogaleus medius". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.1. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 2014-06-15. 
  3. ^ Dausmann, K. H., Glos, J., Ganzhorn, J. U., & Heldmaier, G. (2004). "Hibernation in a tropical primate". Nature 429 (6994): 825–826. doi:10.1038/429825a. PMID 15215852. 
  4. ^ a b Krystal, A. D.; Schopler, B.; Kobbe, S.; Williams, C.; Rakatondrainibe, H.; Yoder, A. D.; Klopfer, P. (2013). "The Relationship of Sleep with Temperature and Metabolic Rate in a Hibernating Primate". In Seebacher, Frank. PLoS ONE 8 (9): e69914. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0069914.  edit
  5. ^ Groves, Colin (2000). "The genus Cheirogaleus: Unrecognized biodiversity in dwarf lemurs". International Journal of Primatology 21 (6): 943–962. doi:10.1023/A:1005559012637. 
  6. ^ Mittermeier, R.A.; Louis, E.E.; Richardson, M.; Schwitzer, C.; Langrand, O.; Rylands, A.B.; Hawkins, F.; Rajaobelina, S.; Ratsimbazafy, J.; Rasoloarison, R.; Roos, C.; Kappeler, P.M.; MacKinnon, J. (2010). Lemurs of Madagascar. Illustrated by S.D. Nash (3rd ed.). Conservation International. p. 183. ISBN 978-1-934151-23-5. 
  7. ^ Groeneveld, L.F.; Weisrock, D.W.; Rasoloarison, R.M.; Yoder, A.D.; Kappeler, P.M. (2009). "Species delimitation in lemurs: multiple genetic loci reveal low levels of species diversity in the genus Cheirogaleus" (PDF). BMC Evolutionary Biology 9 (30). doi:10.1186/1471-2148-9-30. PMC 2652444. PMID 19193227. 
  8. ^ "Lemurs of Madagascar".