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Joseph Smit's Faces of Lorises (1904)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Primates
Suborder: Strepsirrhini
Superfamily: Lorisoidea
Family: Lorisidae
Subfamily: Lorisinae
Gray, 1821


  • Lorinae
    Jenkins, 1987[2]

Loris is the common name for the strepsirrhine primates of the subfamily Lorisinae in family Lorisidae. Loris is one genus in this subfamily and includes the slender lorises, while Nycticebus is the genus of the slow lorises.

Lorises are nocturnal. They are found in tropical and woodland forests of India, Sri Lanka, and parts in southeast Asia. Loris locomotion is a slow and cautious climbing form of quadrupedalism. Some lorises are almost entirely insectivorous, while others also include fruits, gums, leaves, and slugs in their diet.[3]

Female lorises practice infant parking, leaving their young infants behind in nests. Before they do this they bathe their young with allergenic saliva that is acquired by licking patches on the insides of their elbows that produce a mild toxin that discourages most predators,[3] though orangutans occasionally eat lorises.[4]

Taxonomic classification[edit]

The family Lorisidae is found within the infraorder Lemuriformes and superfamily Lorisoidea, along with the family Galagidae, the galagos. This infraorder is a sister taxon of Lemuriformes, the lemurs. Within Lorisinae, there are ten species (and several more subspecies) of lorises across two genera:[1]

As pets[edit]

While it appears that lorises might make very good pets as they seem harmless and cute by many people, they are wild animals and not suitable to be kept as recreational livestock. The fact remains that they are only harmless once their teeth have been removed as they are capable of inflicting a toxic bite. Tooth removal, while common, is sometimes crude, causing the slow, painful death of many animals. It should not be forgotten that lorises are wild animals, which can be obtained only in the grey market sector. They suffer a lot when taken away from their natural habitat and struggle to adapt to new homes. Many social activists are fighting to save lorises and to stop their illegal trading. Youtube viral videos showing activities of lorises as pets, which are considered cute and adorable, have been major setbacks for these social activists.


  1. ^ a b Groves, C. P. (2005). Wilson, D. E.; Reeder, D. M, eds. Mammal Species of the World (3rd ed.). Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 122–123. OCLC 62265494. ISBN 0-801-88221-4. 
  2. ^ Brandon-Jones, D.; Eudey, A. A.; Geissmann, T.; Groves, C. P.; Melnick, D. J.; Morales, J. C.; Shekelle, M.; Stewart, C.-B. (2004). "Asian Primate Classification" (PDF). International Journal of Primatology 25 (1): 100. 
  3. ^ a b Jurmain et al (2008). Introduction to Physical Anthropology. 
  4. ^ "Orangutan Ecology | Orangutan Foundation International". Orangutan.org. Retrieved 2014-01-14.