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Random Week: Mongoose Lemur (Eulemur mongoz)

Posted on Jul 23, 2012 by in Primates, Theme Weeks | 6 comments


Number 0411

This week, is picking our mammals, and the random-number generator made me very happy this morning. Instead of the statistically likely rodent, we get a lemur! Hello, mongoose lemur. We can tell that this one is a male because his cheeks and beard are red; females are plain gray and white. The mongoose lemur is a little unusual among lemurs for two reasons. Unlike most lemurs, which are either nocturnal or diurnal, the mongoose lemur seems to switch between the two depending on the season. It’s sometimes active at night and sometimes during the day. And while the mongoose lemur does live on Madagascar, like all other lemurs, it is one of only two species that also live on the Comoros Islands, which are about 200 miles northwest of Comoros. On Madgascar, lemurs play a surprising role: they pollinate plants.


  1. This is one of your all-time best drawings, Jennifer. The line work, the texture and sheen of the fur, and the details in the eyes and nose are especially captivating.

    Oh, and I love the fangs!

  2. Why, thank you, Ted! I am pleased with it, too. Their fangs are so funny!

  3. He’s a cutie!

  4. Hi mom,
    Why do you think that these beautiful creatures grow differently colored fur depending on if there’re male or female? Do you think it might be related to the reason that human men get facial hair as they get older and women don’t?
    This drawing just makes me want to pet them!
    The daughter that loves you tons,

  5. Thank you, Sheila!

    My goodness, Coco, you ask some smart questions! My guess would be that the males have to attract females, and that’s why they have the red beards—to attract attention. I think that’s probably why men have facial hair, too—it signals that they’re grown up and ready to attract a mate.

  6. Mom,
    Haha!! Thanks!
    Ohh… That makes a lot of sense! Thank you.

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