|Pygmy mouse lemur (M. myoxinus)|
É. Geoffroy, 1834
|About 21 species|
|Combined distribution of Microcebus|
Mouse lemurs have a combined head, body and tail length of less than 27 centimetres (11 in), making them the smallest primates (the smallest species being Madame Berthe's mouse lemur); however, their weight fluctuates in response to daylight duration. Lemurs and Mouse Lemurs were announced by the IUCN as the most endangered of all vertebrates. There are about 21 mouse lemur species identified by 2015. There were only 2 known mouse lemur species by 1992. It was estimated that the 21 mouse lemur species evolved from a common ancestor 10 million years ago. Evolution of mouse lemurs is an example for adaptive radiation.
Mouse lemurs are omnivorous; their diets are diverse and include insect secretions, arthropods, small vertebrates, gum, fruit, flowers, nectar, and also leaves and buds depending on the season.
Mouse lemurs are considered cryptic species - with very little morphological differences between the various species, but with high genetic diversity. Recent evidence points to differences in their mating calls, which is very diverse. Since mouse lemurs are nocturnal, they might not have evolved to look differently, but had evolved various auditory and vocal systems.
Mouse lemurs have the smallest known brain of any primate, at just 0.004 pounds (2 grams).
Reproduction and Evolution
Mouse lemurs are also known for their sperm competition. During breeding seasons, the testicles of male mouse lemurs increases in size about 30% of their normal size. This was speculated to increase the sperm production thereby conferring an advantage for the individual to bear more offspring. There are various hypotheses relating the rapid evolution of mouse lemur species this sperm competition.
- Genus Microcebus: mouse lemurs
- Gray mouse lemur, Microcebus murinus
- Reddish-gray mouse lemur, M. griseorufus
- Golden-brown mouse lemur, M. ravelobensis
- Northern rufous mouse lemur, M. tavaratra
- Sambirano mouse lemur, M. sambiranensis
- Simmons' mouse lemur, M. simmonsi
- Pygmy mouse lemur, M. myoxinus
- Brown mouse lemur, M. rufus
- Madame Berthe's mouse lemur, M. berthae
- Goodman's mouse lemur, M. lehilahytsara
- Jolly's mouse lemur, M. jollyae
- MacArthur's mouse lemur, M. macarthurii 
- Mittermeier's mouse lemur, M. mittermeieri
- Claire's mouse lemur, M. mamiratra, synonymous to M. lokobensis 
- Bongolava mouse lemur M. bongolavensis 
- Danfoss' mouse lemur M. danfossi 
- Arnhold's mouse lemur, M. arnholdi 
- Margot Marsh's mouse lemur, M. margotmarshae 
- Gerp's mouse lemur. M. gerpi
- Anosy mouse lemur. M. tanosi
- Marohita mouse lemur. M. marohita
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- "Primate Factsheets: Mouse lemur (Microcebus) Taxonomy, Morphology, & Ecology". wisc.edu.
- Andrès M, Gachot-Neveu H, Perret M. 2001. Genetic determination of paternity in captive grey mouse lemurs: pre-copulatory sexual competition rather than sperm competition in a nocturnal prosimian? Behaviour 138(8):1047-63.
- "Yoder Lab - Research". duke.edu.
- Folia Primatol (Basel). 2003 Sep-Dec;74(5-6):355-66. Mating system in mouse lemurs: theories and facts, using analysis of paternity. Andrès M1, Solignac M, Perret M.
- Mittermeier, R.; Ganzhorn, J.; Konstant, W.; Glander, K.; Tattersall, I.; Groves, C.; Rylands, A.; Hapke, A.; Ratsimbazafy, J.; Mayor, M.; Louis, E.; Rumpler, Y.; Schwitzer, C. & Rasoloarison, R. (December 2008). "Lemur Diversity in Madagascar". International Journal of Primatology 29 (6): 1607–1656. doi:10.1007/s10764-008-9317-y. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- "New Primate Species Discovered on Madagascar".
- "Nature News: Lemur boom on Madagascar". Nature. 2006-11-20. Retrieved 2007-12-10.
- Louis Jr., E.; Engberg, S.; McGuire, S.; McCormick, M.; Randriamampionona, R.; Ranaivoarisoa, J.; Bailey, C.; Mittermeier, R. & Lei, R. (2008). "Revision of the Mouse Lemurs, M. (Primates, Lemuriformes), of Northern and Northwestern Madagascar with Descriptions of Two New Species at Montagne d’Ambre National Park and Antafondro Classified Forest" (PDF). Primate Conservation 23: 19–38. doi:10.1896/052.023.0103. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- Radespiel, U.; Ratsimbazafy, J. H.; Rasoloharijaona, S.; Raveloson, H.; Andriaholinirina, N.; Rakotondravony, R.; Randrianarison, R. M.; Randrianambinina, B. (2011). "First indications of a highland specialist among mouse lemurs (Microcebus spp.) and evidence for a new mouse lemur species from eastern Madagascar". Primates 53 (2): 157–170. doi:10.1007/s10329-011-0290-2. PMID 22198090.
- Rasoloarison, Rodin M.; Weisrock, David W.; Yoder, Anne D.; Rakotondravony, Daniel; Kappeler, Peter M. (2013). "Two New Species of Mouse Lemurs (Cheirogaleidae: Microcebus) from Eastern Madagascar". International Journal of Primatology: 1–15. doi:10.1007/s10764-013-9672-1.
- Pappas, Stephanie (26 March 2013). "Tiny Lemur Twins Are 2 New Species". LiveScience.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Microcebus.|
- Mouse lemur skeleton – Skeleton from the University of Texas at Austin
- BBC video clips and news articles