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Critically Endangered Red-Ruffed Lemurs Born at Naples Zoo

Naples Zoo at Caribbean Gardens is celebrating the birth and debut of three critically endangered red-ruffed lemurs. The adorable brothers made their debut to the public Friday, June 28.

Naples Zoo’s newest residents were named by the people who spend the most time with them - their keepers. The first born is Chip, next is Jalapeno and then Pico, after their spicy personalities.

The red-ruffed lemurs were born on May 5th to 11-year-old mother Ruby. Ruby and her mate, 4-year-old Indy, were specifically matched by the Association of Zoos and Aquarium’s Species Survival Plan (SSP). The SSP is a cooperatively managed breeding program that works to create sustainable populations of threatened and endangered species.

Keepers check on the babies daily and have observed Ruby protecting and caring for her young. Zoo veterinarian, Dr. Lizzy Arnett-Chinn, has completed a physical exam on all three lemurs to determine that they are all male and they are strong and healthy. The lemurs are weighed weekly to ensure proper growth.

Red-ruffed lemurs are one of the World’s 25 Most Endangered Primates. Native to the northeastern deciduous forests of Madagascar, red-ruffed lemurs are considered critically endangered by the international Union for Conservation of Nature due to deforestation, hunting and trapping for pet trade. Naples Zoo supports a number of conservation and education efforts on Madagascar from eco-agriculture instruction and reforestation projects to regional conservation conferences and anti-poaching patrols. 

To follow the Zoo’s progress in caring for the babies, check for news on the Zoo’s Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

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