A new pair of baby ring-tail lemur twins were born at Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust on March 28, 2011, to proud parents Muriel and Hannibal. The babies are usually with mum, clinging to her belly to start.Over the last few weeks they have begun climbing on her back so that they can take a good look at their surroundings. Dad Hannibal has been seen grooming the babies and sitting with his arm around Muriel. In just a short time the twins have grown quite a bit -- and gotten very active!
This very distinctive lemur, with its striking banded tail, is probably the best known species of Madagascan primate -- but it is threatened with extinction due to the rapid loss of its habitat. Ring-tails were the first lemurs to be kept at Durrell, arriving in 1964! Since then a great deal of expertise has been gained with this and other species.
Durrell continues to make an extremely valuable contribution to lemur knowledge and captive management. This year, Durrell is celebrating 25 years of working in Madagascar on a wide variety of projects including the conservation of lemurs, as well as captive breeding, habitat protection, research, education and training programs. A number of Madagascan students have completed studies at Durrell’s International Training Centre in Jersey and returned home with the skills they need to carry out such work and help save their native wildlife.