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At least one group of mammals is good at social distancing.
A family of lemurs has been observing the practice while they wait to see the newest member of its clan at a British zoo, British news agency SWNS reports. The lemur is just a few weeks old and is being cared for by experts at the Wild Place Project in Bristol, England.
Lemurs are endangered, making the birth of the newborn critical to the species’ survival.
A critically endangered lemur has been born at Wild Place Project. The tiny Lac Aloatra gentle lemur is smaller than a tennis ball but its birth is crucial to the survival of this rare species. Now two weeks old, the primate is the second gentle lemur to be born to parents Tiana and Roa in the past two years. (Credit SWNS)
“It’s always exciting to welcome a newborn and Tiana is proving to be a fantastic mother and is very attentive towards her baby, holding it close and grooming it,” Joe Norman, animal team leader at Wild Place Project, said. “We will be keeping an eye on the pair over the coming weeks but the infant appears strong and healthy and has been seen feeding well.”
The baby lemur, which does not have a name yet, is the second baby born to its parents, Tiana and Roa, after its brother Hazo.
It’s unclear at this point whether the newborn lemur is a male or female, and experts note that it could be six months before its gender is identified at its first health check.
Lac Alaotra gentle lemurs are at risk of extinction in their home country of Madagascar, the New England Conversancy writes on its website.
The newly born baby lemur and her mother at Bristol Zoo. (Credit SWNS)
Since 1990, it is estimated the population of the species, which can live for up to 23 years, has plummeted from 11,000 to 2,500. A separate, more recent report believes the total population in the wild may be less than 1,000.
In October, a California man was sentenced to three months in prison for stealing a ring-tailed lemur from the Santa Ana Zoo.
In November, a lemur on Madagascar attempted to “steal” a photographer’s camera as he was trying to take pictures of it.
Fox News’ Talia Kaplan contributed to this story.