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Places | Mayotte | Lemurs

Visiting The Lemurs
By Casper
One day when we were in Dzoudzi (that's where all the boats stay) Inge, a woman from another boat, said that on Bouzi island there are lemurs and there are people taking care of them.
Lemurs are only found in Madagascar and the Comoros Islands. They are a bit like monkeys and are a suborder of primates. They look really cute with their orange eyes and big fluffy  tails. They are ever so soft and very agile.  Unfortunately, people are destroying the forests where they live and also sometimes kill them for food. On Mayotte there used to be 40.000 of them, but now they think there are only 10.000.

So we went to Bouzi island with our boat and anchored there. My parents sent Alex and I to swim to the island and see if there were lemurs. Sure enough there were lemurs everywhere,  big ones, small ones and some even had babies. It turns out that this place is a refuge for lemurs and we talked with one of the caretakers and learnt a lot about them. The caretakers do not feed them everything they need, they give them only a little bit and then they have to find the rest themselves in the wild. It's the rainy season and there is more food now (December), so that's a good time to have a baby. When the mother has a baby she is pregnant for 3 months. After the birth the baby gets nursed by the mother while hanging on by wrapping it's tail all the way round the mother's tummy and back again for 4 months. After that a big brother or other male will look after it too and teach it things.
Lemurs live in families of about 15 and each family has it's own table put up by the caretakers. The Lemur families have a lot of social activity. Fore example: baby lemurs that the caretakers saved after the mother was killed by people might be accepted as part of another family when they get older. They hang out together and there is always a female boss in the group.

We learnt a lot about lemurs and it was lots of fun being with them because they sometimes hopped onto my shoulder when I was feeding them bananas and because they make cute pig like noises.


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