Posted on 02nd November 2018 by Media Relations
Ring-tailed Lemur births continue breeding success
Spring has definitely sprung at Taronga Western Plains Zoo with the arrival of three Ring-tailed Lemur babies born to three different mothers.
The Ring-tailed Lemur babies were all sired by Dia and were born in the following order:
- Rakitra gave birth to a female on 28 August 2018
- Cleo gave birth to a male on 10 September 2018
- Noa gave birth to a female on 17 September 2018
“It has been an exciting couple of months for the Ring-tailed Lemur keepers as we have watched each mother give birth, and start to care for and nurture their offspring,” said Keeper Rachel Schildkraut.
“It is still early days but the three babies are all doing exceptionally well so far. They are exceeding all their milestones and are looking very healthy and strong.”
The Ring-tailed Lemur babies are spending most of their time in the breeding facility with their mothers until they grow in size, are able to move around confidently and become a little more independent.
“The mothers feel much safer in the facility that offers lots of shelter and hiding places as they protect their very small babies. In the wild, young babies are very easy targets for predators,” said Rachel.
The Ring-tailed Lemurs are being given the opportunity to go outside onto the island at key times across the day to spend time outdoors, however they don’t always choose to go out. Visitors can catch glimpses of the mothers and their babies from a viewing area overlooking the back of the breeding facility.
“Over the coming months the babies will start to explore their surroundings more and interact with their older siblings. They will also start mouthing food and nibbling on some of the softer items,” said Rachel.
Ring-tailed Lemurs are quite difficult to breed as there is only a very small window for Lemurs to fall pregnant. They generally come into season for 24 hours once a year, so if there isn’t a successful mating during this period it’s a long wait until the following year.
Ring-tailed Lemur breeding season is generally around April, so births are usually expected around September/October due to the four month gestation for this species.
“We are delighted that this is the third successful year of breeding for the Zoo’s Ring-tailed Lemurs and we hope the babies continue to meet their milestones over the coming months,” said Rachel.
The best times to see the Ring-tailed Lemurs is generally mid-morning or mid-afternoon at present when they are out on their island with a zoo keeper. At other times during the day viewing is from the back of the breeding facility.