Rare twins among the new addition to Madagascar! exhibit

Bronx, NY – May 28, 2014 –
Three brown collared lemur babies (Eulemur collaris) are on exhibit in Madagascar! at the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Bronx Zoo.

The births include a rare set of twins born to mother Vera and father Antoine on April 1. The single baby was born to mother Jakara and father Gerard on April 6.

All three infants like to nestle in their mothers’ fur. They live in the Spiny Forest exhibit in Madagascar! along with ring-tailed lemurs, radiated tortoises, vasa parrots, red fodies, grey-headed lovebirds, crested couas and ground doves.

Collared lemurs use their long tails to balance when leaping through the forest canopy. They live in groups of males and females but are not matriarchal like many other lemur species. The young ride on their mother’s back hiding in her fur for the first few months of their lives.

The birth of these three lemurs bolsters the relatively small North American population of collared lemurs to 34 living in 10 zoos. The Bronx Zoo has had tremendous success breeding lemurs as part of the Species Survival Plan, a cooperative breeding program designed to enhance the genetic viability of animal populations in zoos accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.

All lemur species are found only on the African island nation of Madagascar. Brown collared lemurs are native to the tropical forests of southeastern Madagascar where their range is being destroyed by charcoal production and slash-and-burn agriculture.

The species is classified as “Vulnerable” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Some other lemur species are in decline due to devastating loss of suitable habitat.

There are five species of lemurs on exhibit in the Bronx Zoo’s Madagascar! exhibit. Opened in 2008, Madagascar! educates zoo visitors about the country’s incredible biodiversity and the conservation challenges it faces.

The Wildlife Conservation Society works in Madagascar to save lemurs and their habitats and throughout continental Africa to save wildlife and wild places.

Max Pulsinelli (718) 220-5182; mpulsinelli@wcs.org
Steve Fairchild (718) 220-5189; sfairchild@wcs.org
The Wildlife Conservation Society’s Bronx Zoo is open daily from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. weekdays, 5:30 p.m. weekends from April to October; 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m November to March. Adult admission is $16.95, children (3-12 years old) $12.95, children under 3 are free, seniors (65+) are $14.95. Parking is $15 for cars and $18 for buses. The Bronx Zoo is conveniently located off the Bronx River Parkway at Exit 6; by train via the #2 or #5 or by bus via the #9, #12, #19, #22, MetroNorth, or BxM11 Express Bus service (from Manhattan that stops just outside the gate.) To plan your trip, visit bronxzoo.com or call 718-367-1010.

Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS)
WCS saves wildlife and wild places worldwide through science, conservation action, education, and inspiring people to value nature. VISION: WCS envisions a world where wildlife thrives in healthy lands and seas, valued by societies that embrace and benefit from the diversity and integrity of life on earth. To achieve our mission, WCS, based at the Bronx Zoo, harnesses the power of its Global Conservation Program in more than 60 nations and in all the world’s oceans and its five wildlife parks in New York City, visited by 4 million people annually. WCS combines its expertise in the field, zoos, and aquarium to achieve its conservation mission. Visit: www.wcs.org; facebook.com/TheWCS; youtube.com/user/WCSMedia; follow: @theWCS.