Sportive lemur

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Sportive lemurs[1]
Lepilemur sahamalazensis c.png
Sahamalaza sportive lemur
(L. sahamalazensis)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Primates
Suborder: Strepsirrhini
Infraorder: Lemuriformes
Family: Lepilemuridae
Gray, 1870
Genus: Lepilemur
I. Geoffroy, 1851
Type species
Lepilemur mustelinus
I. Geoffroy
Species

over 20, see text

Lepilemur distribution.svg
Synonyms

Genus:

  • Galeocebus Wagner, 1855
  • Lepidilemur Giebel, 1859
  • Mixocebus Peters, 1874

The sportive lemurs are the medium sized primates that make up the family Lepilemuridae. The family consists of only one extant genus, Lepilemur. They are closely related to the other lemurs and exclusively live on the island of Madagascar. For a time, this family was named Megaladapidae, but the current name was given precedence since the extinct genus Megaladapis was removed from the family.

Physical characteristics[edit]

Their fur is grey brown or reddish colored on the top and whitish yellow underneath. They typically have a short head with large, round ears. They grow to a length of 30 to 35 cm (with a tail just about as long as their body) and weigh up to 0.9 kg. Their eyes have a tapetum lucidum behind the retina, hence they have eyeshine.

Behaviour and mating[edit]

Sportive lemurs are strictly nocturnal and predominantly arboreal, moving among the trees with long jumps powered by their strong hind legs. On the ground, they hop similarly as the kangaroos. During the day they hide in the leafy covering or tree hollows. Sportive lemurs are solitary but defend their territory vehemently against same sex intruders. The territories of males and females can overlap.

Diet[edit]

They are mainly herbivores and their diet consists predominantly of leaves.

Reproduction and lifespan[edit]

Birthing happens between September and December after a gestation of 120 to 150 days, and is usually of a single young which is often reared in a nest in a tree hollow. At about four months the juveniles are weaned but remain with their mother up to an age of one year. At about 18 months they are fully mature, and live to be about eight years old.

Classification[edit]

* New species according to molecular analysis[2]
** New species according to molecular analysis[3]
*** New species according to molecular analysis[4]
**** New species according to molecular analysis[5]
***** New species according to molecular analysis[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Groves, C. P. (2005). "Family Lepilemuridae". In Wilson, D. E.; Reeder, D. M. Mammal Species of the World (3rd ed.). Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 117–119. ISBN 978-0-8018-8221-0. OCLC 62265494. 
  2. ^ Andriaholinirina, N., Fausser, J., Roos, C., Rumpler, Y., et al. (2006-02-23). "Molecular phylogeny and taxonomic revision of the sportive lemurs (Lepilemur, Primates)". BMC Evolutionary Biology 6: 17. doi:10.1186/1471-2148-6-17. PMC 1397877. PMID 16504080. 
  3. ^ Edward E. Louis, Jr., Shannon E. Engberg, Runhua Lei, Huimin Geng, Julie A. Sommer, Richard Randriamampionona, Jean C. Randriamanana, John R. Zaonarivelo, Rambinintsoa Andriantompohavana, Gisele Randria, Prosper, Boromé Ramaromilanto, Gilbert Rakotoarisoa, Alejandro Rooney, and Rick A. Brenneman (2006). "Molecular and morphological analyses of the sportive lemurs (Family Megaladapidae: Genus Lepilemur) reveals 11 previously unrecognized species" (PDF). Texas Tech University Special Publications (49): 1–49. 
  4. ^ Mathias Craul, Elke Zimmermann, Solofo Rasoloharijaona, Blanchard Randrianambinina and Ute Radespiel (2007-05-31). "Unexpected species diversity of Malagasy primates (Lepilemur spp.) in the same biogeographical zone: a morphological and molecular approach with the description of two new species". BMC Evolutionary Biology 7: 83. doi:10.1186/1471-2148-7-83. PMC 1913500. PMID 17540016. 
  5. ^ Palmer, Jane (2008-02-21). "Henry Doorly Zoo scientists identify two new lemur species". Omaha World-Herald. Retrieved 2008-02-24. [dead link]
  6. ^ B. Ramaromilanto, R. Lei, S. E. Engberg, S. E. Johnson, B. D. Sitzmann, and E. E. Louis, Jr., 2009. (2009-04-08). "Description of a new sportive lemur, Holland’s or Mananara-Nord sportive lemur, from Mananara-Nord Biosphere Reserve, Madagascar". Museum of Texas Tech University, N. 286, 1-22. Retrieved 2009-05-23. 

External links[edit]