Animals / Mammal Facts / Lemurs - Bright-Eyed and Bushy-tailed / Black Lemur - The Other Blue-Eyed Primate

Black Lemur - The Other Blue-Eyed Primate


face blue eye

 

A species that's unfortunately considered vulnerable to extinction, the black lemur exists only in the moist rainforest of Madagascar and its nearby islands. With its black face and white ear tufts, the lemur is a peculiar looking creature, but what makes it even more peculiar is its possible eye color. The blue eyed variety of the black lemur is the only primate other than humans to have blue eyes, while its relatives have brown or orange eyes. These usually bright eyed creatures have gained notoriety via pop culture, and can be found in zoos all over the world and on reserves where they can hopefully propagate their species. Now you might imagine that with a name like black lemur the species would have fur that is black in color. Well, the males do fit that description and both males and females are born with black fur but the females slowly change in color to be light brown with gray on the face and white on the ear tufts.

 

 

eating

 

female face blue eye

 

In the wild these lemurs survive primarily on fruits, but have also been observed eating fungus, bugs, and nectar. Living in groups of two to fifteen specimens, they rarely experience infighting, and utilize the entire forest for foraging and shelter. They can be found any time of day on both the ground and in the trees, and are known to exhibit some interesting behavior in regards to bugs. The black lemur has been continually observed taking toxic millipedes and poking them until they secrete their poison. The lemur then rubs the creature all over its body; it does so for one of two reasons: to repel other insects, or to "get a buzz" (judging by their appearance we might be inclined to favor this possibility). Science is split on the exact reason, but one thing is for sure: black lemurs are interesting creatures! That's a fact!

 

on tree

 

looking down

 

 

 

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