MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Zoo Miami is celebrating a milestone with the birth of an endangered Mongoose lemur.
The baby lemur was born on May 6, when the zoo was closed because of the coronavirus pandemic.
There were other births at the zoo during the zoo’s three-month closure, but this particular birth was especially significant because it was the first birth of this species in the zoo’s history.
The mother, who is 5-years-old, is named Julieta. The father, who is 12, is named Jaunito. Both were born at the Lemur Conservation Foundation in Myakka City, Florida. They both arrived at Zoo Miami in January of 2019 and this is their first offspring.
It’s still not known whether the baby is a boy or a girl because a neonatal exam has not been performed yet. Zoo staff is giving Julieta and her infant time to bond.
Like all other lemurs, Mongoose lemurs are found on the island of Madagascar. However, it is the only species of lemur to also be found outside of Madagascar after being introduced to the Comoros Islands northwest of Madagascar. They are arboreal and feed primarily on fruits and flowers and are considered to be important pollinators. They will also occasionally take grubs and small vertebrates. Found in small family groups that consist of an adult bonded pair and offspring, the adult female is usually the dominant individual.
Julieta and her baby are on exhibit but they may be difficult to see because she prefers to stay high in the trees, still being very protective of her baby which appears to be doing very well.