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Lemurs in Love Take on the Same Smell

It’s a finding fit for Valentine’s Day: Coquerel’s sifakas that have mated and produced offspring alter their natural scents to smell alike, a new study says.

Could People Hibernate? Lemurs Give Clues

The only hibernating primate, the fat-tailed dwarf lemur, may open up new opportunities for space travel and improved medicines, a new study says.

Do Lemurs Have Personalities?

Lemurs have identifiable personality traits that are consistent from situation to situation, a new study says.

NG Weekend: Secrets of Sleep

This week on National Geographic Weekend radio, host Boyd Matson speaks with guests about the big oil leak, getting stalked by a bear, travel nightmares, global warming, flying reptiles, the Arctic thaw, sleep secrets, snow leopards, and treetop lemurs. Hour 1 An oil spill in 1971 off the coast of California compelled John Francis to…

Rare primates born in New York zoo (photos)

Among the crop of this year’s spring newborns at New York’s Bronx Zoo were two rare primates: a mandrill and a Coquerel’s sifaka. Wildlife Conservation Society photo by Julie Larsen Maher The sifaka is a special birth for the Bronx Zoo as there are only 51 sifaka in captivity worldwide, said the Wildlife Conservation Society,…

Conservationists applaud renewed ban on Madagascar rosewood

The reinstatement of a ban on logging and export of rosewood by Madagascar’s transitional government was welcomed by environmental activists today. But two environmental watchdog groups, Global Witness and the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), warned that “the ban must be strictly enforced and that existing timber awaiting export should be dealt with in an open…

Giant mouse lemur seen in Madagascar threatened forest

A new population of rare giant mouse lemurs was discovered in southwestern Madagascar’s Ranobe forest, in an area threatened by mining concessions, WWF said today. “Last year during a night survey monitoring biodiversity along the gallery forest of Ranobe near Toliara…Charlie Gardner and Louise Jasper came across a giant mouse lemur (Mirza) foraging within fruiting…

A life in the trees is a longer one

By Ed Yong (via @Not Exactly Rocket Science @ScienceBlogs) In The Descent of Man, Darwin talked about the benefits of life among the treetops, citing the “power of quickly climbing trees, so as to escape from enemies”. Around 140 years later, these benefits have been confirmed by Milena Shattuck and Scott Williams from the University…

Half of all primates threatened with extinction

Nearly half the primate species are in danger of becoming extinct from destruction of tropical forests, illegal wildlife trade and commercial bush-meat hunting, conservationists said today. “Mankind’s closest living relatives–the world’s apes, monkeys, lemurs and other primates–are on the brink of extinction and in need of urgent conservation measures,” the conservationists said in a news statement…

New primate fossil casts doubts on “missing link” claim

A 37-million-year-old fossil primate from Egypt, described in this week’s issue of Nature, moves a controversial German fossil known as Ida out of the human lineage, Nature News reports. “Teeth and ankle bones of the new Egyptian specimen show that the 47-million-year-old Ida, formally called Darwinius masillae, is not in the lineage of early apes and monkeys…

Act Aggressively to Curb Illegal Logging, Madagascar Urged

Madagascar’s efforts to curtail illegal logging in the World Heritage Sites of Masoala and Marojejy National Parks and their peripheral zones have not reduced the impact of logging in the immediate term, say governments, international agencies, and conservation groups that support conservation of the country’s natural heritage. A statement issued today by 13 embassies, agencies, and organizations–the…

Lemurs, Rare Forests Threatened by Madagascar Strife

Updated with new images and text  Photo of silky sifakas in Marojejy National Park by Jeff Gibbs/courtesy Erik Patel Looters are invading Madagascar’s protected wildlife sanctuaries, harvesting trees and threatening critically endangered lemurs and other species, conservationists said today. Marojejy National Park in the northern part of the African island country has been closed to tourism. Rangers…