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Article: A naturalistic stroll in Madagascar: A threatened paradise

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Forum: Article: A naturalistic stroll in MadagascarReplies: 13, Views: 56
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gloria125
Greensboro, AL

April 20, 2008
6:34 PM

Post #4836449

jjacques: I was especially interested in your article because years ago I studied the Madagascar Lemurs at the San Diego zoo and I always wondered what their home would have been like.
Are there any preservation projects to save this habitat? And how are the lemurs doing?

Thanks for the article.

gloria
Sharran
Calvert City, KY
(Zone 7a)

April 20, 2008
8:06 PM

Post #4836811

JJ, I enjoyed reading your article. I found it very informative.
Thank you.
GranvilleSouth

(Zone 10a)

April 20, 2008
10:24 PM

Post #4837301

Good one JJ. I love that white frog. Great read & great pictures.

jjacques

jjacques
LE TAMPON
Reunion (French)

April 21, 2008
5:56 PM

Post #4841561

Gloria,
Some people in Mada do try to preserve forests and lemurs but it is a very hard task, even forests who have been bought and are therefore supposed to be private and off-limit are still vsited by poochers. Folks would basically respect lemurs are they are 'fady' or taboo so they are not hunted and eaten. In national reservations they try to attract as many tourists as possible in order to get some money so trails are all over the place, ground stamped which is very bad for plants regeneration hence natural life habitat. And as people are too poor to buy gas they rely in charcoal for cooking which means more tree felled...
Ian,
Those frogs are amazing, tiny things (say 5cm long) but so noisy!
gloria125
Greensboro, AL

April 21, 2008
6:02 PM

Post #4841595

jj: Sounds like it is not a good perspective for the lemurs.

I got to know several on quite a personal basis at the zoo when I was working with the primates there. I always wondered where and how they lived and what they ate.

thanks,

gloria

jjacques

jjacques
LE TAMPON
Reunion (French)

April 21, 2008
6:11 PM

Post #4841625

No good perspective for the lemurs, the forests and the people over there...They do live in forests (the ones I have seen) and are vegetarians (leaves, fruits, barks) and live as groups. In Mayotte (French island of the Comoros Archipelago, North-West of Madagascar) the Catta lemur is a common sight in the forests and they often come close to the houses to get fruits, some would even come and fetch bananas from you hands. Lovely animals.
gloria125
Greensboro, AL

April 21, 2008
6:38 PM

Post #4841741

Thank you JJ. I hope you will take us on a return visit someday.

gloria
GranvilleSouth

(Zone 10a)

April 22, 2008
3:35 AM

Post #4844630

I am with Gloria in being fascinated by Lemurs. Their behaviour seems so similar to monkeys but I suspect there must be some differences. Would you say they are as smart as monkeys?

jjacques

jjacques
LE TAMPON
Reunion (French)

April 22, 2008
12:28 PM

Post #4845536

Of course, next time I head for Mada there will be an article for you guys, I am writing one on Mayotte island.
Yes, lemurs are very different from monkeys. They never seem menacing and always act extremely softly (maybe not during mating season but this is another subject!). I have seen many baboons when traveling in South Africa but never felt like patting one! Another very special feature which both humans and lemurs share are finger prints strangely enough. Many people in Madagascar believe that lemurs are some intermediary between men and spirits or they are some kind of ghosts, loss souls or whatever. And then you get the nocturnal lemurs which are just incredible.
JJ
GranvilleSouth

(Zone 10a)

April 22, 2008
9:46 PM

Post #4848374

OK. Very interesting. Apes have fingerprints too but I have no idea if monkeys do. I know what we would prefer to believe, but I have to wonder if a lemur's passive nature makes it more or less like us. The nocturnal ones remind me of tree kangaroos. I wouldn't go near a baboon either. They seem a bit like possums, but about 10 times worse.
Ian

jjacques

jjacques
LE TAMPON
Reunion (French)

April 23, 2008
3:58 AM

Post #4850677

I do not think monkeys have fingerprints but they sure are closer to men if you think in terms of agressivity and competity. An adult male baboon can easily tear you up with his arms and fangs, they are reputed to be a real hazard. And they are clever too, just like men...
GranvilleSouth

(Zone 10a)

April 23, 2008
12:46 PM

Post #4851454

OK. Sounds nasty. Do you have large fauna on Reunion besides rats & lemurs?
gloria125
Greensboro, AL

April 23, 2008
2:25 PM

Post #4851880

yeh. It seems many primates have multimale groups that can be quite aggressive, including human populations where football, basketball, army, marines, etc are institutionalized. Gorillas and chimps are the least aggressive and males tend to be loners.

jjacques

jjacques
LE TAMPON
Reunion (French)

April 23, 2008
4:31 PM

Post #4852435

Hi,
Nothing large here, all the big animals (dodo, ground tortoises and parrots) have been eaten by the first settlers.
You are right on Gloria, male groups have the fascinating ability to produce a sum of stupidity and violence more important that all the individual stupidity and violence added, amazing! You know why gorillas and chimps are quite cool? They never watch TV...

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Other Article: A naturalistic stroll in Madagascar Threads you might be interested in:

SubjectThread StarterRepliesLast Post
Wonderful onewish1 6 Apr 20, 2008 6:28 PM
Merci beaucoup soive2000 4 Apr 21, 2008 6:34 PM
Magnificent! wee7341 1 Apr 22, 2008 12:35 PM
Madagascar moniquedigs 1 Apr 22, 2008 12:38 PM
Lemur gloria125 1 Apr 23, 2008 3:54 AM


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