Posted on 08th October 2021 by Media Relations
Keepers are delighted to announce the safe arrival of eight Ring-tailed Lemur babies to eight different mothers in the breeding group at Taronga Western Plains Zoo, Dubbo.
The new babies are made up of five males and three females and are yet to be named.
“This is the most successful breeding season for our Ring-tailed Lemur breeding group to date,” said Keeper Sasha Brook.
“We have five first-time mothers and three experienced mothers. They are all doing a great job caring for their babies. It’s not uncommon for keepers to see one mother grooming another mother’s baby throughout the day.”
These babies are also the first offspring for new male, Skynard who arrived at Taronga Western Plains Zoo last year. Skynard originated from a Zoo overseas therefore his genetics are incredibly important to the regional breeding program in Australasia.
“These babies are the second generation to be born at Taronga Western Plains Zoo and it is truly wonderful to see some of the first offspring born here now become mothers themselves.”
“At the moment the infants are clinging to their mum’s bellies and suckling milk but in the coming month they will start to be more active and begin riding on their mother’s backs more and more,” said Sasha.
Ring-tailed Lemurs only have a very small window to fall pregnant. They generally come into season for 24-48 hours once a year, so if there isn’t a successful mating during this period it is a long wait until the following year.
The Ring-tailed Lemur breeding season is generally in March-May, so births are usually expected in early spring following a four-month gestation period.
“The babies are currently a little difficult to see as they are small and clinging to their mum’s tummy but are most active in the mid-morning and mid-afternoon on the island if the weather is warm.”
Taronga Western Plains Zoo is home to two groups of Ring-tailed Lemurs, a breeding group near the Savannah picnic ground and a bachelor group at the Savannah Lake. The breeding group now has 17 individuals including the most recent babies, whilst the bachelor group has four individuals.
Taronga Western Plains Zoo will reopen on Monday 18 October 2021.