Triple trouble for Newquay Zoo with arrival of three rare lemur pups

Our family of black and white ruffed lemurs has almost doubled overnight with the arrival of triplets.

The babies, known as pups, were born in late April, but have only just been spotted coming out of their house. They are now enjoying exploring Lemur Island, where they live with parents Yhoda and Bary, as well as older brother and sister Asotry and Asara.

This is brilliant news, as it increases the numbers of the ex-situ population of black and while ruffed lemurs, which are Critically Endangered in the wild. The species is classed as Critically Endangered for a number of reasons, including habitat destruction via logging, mining and agriculture, as well as the illegal pet trade and being heavily hunted for meat in their native home of Madagascar.

Black and white ruffs are not only distinctive due to their thick, striking coats, but they are also the largest species of lemur and the loudest too. In fact, they are one of the loudest primates, second only to howler monkeys.

Dave Rich, Newquay Zoo Keeper Team Leader, said: “All three of the triplets, which have been microchipped and sexed as boys, are doing really well. They’re having plenty of fun exploring their new enclosure, playing together and learning how to be lemurs from the rest of the family.

“We’re incredibly proud to have black and white ruffed lemurs at Newquay Zoo. Not only are they incredibly cute, but they are one of the 11 primate species here that are part of a European-wide breeding programme to help safeguard the future of the species.”

Visitors can find the black and white ruffed lemur triplets near the zoo entrance and can even watch them explore Lemur Island from the terrace of Café Lemur.