“How endangered is the lemur today?
90 percent of the lemur habitat elsewhere on the island has become wasteland. In 2009, there was a coup. Afterward, the central government was very weak and there was a lot of lawlessness. Timber exploiters came in from Asia and started cutting down the northern forests. Then they started demanding meat for dinner. The meat was lemurs.
We have one lemur species in the North where there are only 30 individuals left. The greater bamboo lemur, the one that I was sent to search for, we’ve found some more patches of them. Still, there are only about 500 left. That’s not a lot for a primate. The good news is that very recently, the politics have changed. They now have an elected government and there’s a lot of hope that things can be turned around.”
This is a fascinating interview with primatologist Dr. Patricia Wright, about lemurs, Madagascar, endangered species, and the complications of habitat conservation. Well worth a read!