Ring-tailed Lemur

Lemur catta

Ring-tailed lemurs live in social troops of a dozen or so, led by a single, dominant female. Lemurs have pungent scent glands they use for communication and even battle. Male ring-tailed lemurs compete for mates by smearing scents from forearm glands onto the tips of their tails.

More info

Raising their tails over their heads, they wave them in front of their opponent’s face until one backs down. The stink fight victor gets the girl.

  • Ring-tailed lemurs spend more time on the ground than other, more arboreal lemurs.
  • Females cooperate when it comes to caring for young, allowing each other to play with, babysit, and even nurse their young.
  • The lemur’s tail can grow up to two feet long, which is longer than the rest of the body.
  • Sunbathing is a popular activity for ring-tailed lemurs as they sit with their limbs splayed out to expose their bellies to soak up the sun’s warmth.


Fact File

Species @ Risk Image
Species Survival Plan Image
pronunciationPronunciation: LEE-mur
where to see themWhere to see them: Lemur Lookout
lengthLength: Up to 1.5 ft
weightWeight: 5 to 8 lbs
life expectancyLife Expectancy: 16 yrs
habitatHabitat: Forest
dietDiet: Fruit, leaves, flowers and insects
exclamationRisk Status: Species at Risk (IUCN-Endangered)