Zoo Keepers at the Welsh Mountain Zoo – National Zoo of Wales have been amazed by the arrival of four ring-tailed lemur babies including twins.
On Friday 16th March, much to the astonishment of their Keepers, three out of the group of 11 ring-tailed lemurs – which arrived in Colwyn Bay from Belfast Zoo in January, each gave birth.
Keepers were delighted but also surprised by this shock arrival from the initially all female group.
– Michelle Pywell, Head Keeper
I was astonished when the three females appeared to be in labour! After they arrived from Belfast, they did weigh slightly more than the other lemurs in the group but this can often occur. They had also been separated from the male ring-tailed lemurs in Belfast for more than 4 months so there was no evidence to suggest that they would be pregnant! However, on speaking with the keepers at Belfast after the birth of the babies, it would seem that a rather curious and affectionate male managed to find his way into the separated enclosure that the females were being kept in before their move.
Weighing just 180 grams and measuring four inches at birth, the playful youngsters have already started to explore their house and small adjoining outside enclosures in the safety of their mothers’ arms.
They will reach around two kilos in weight and one metre in height when fully grown.
The baby lemurs will also share their enclosure with two red-fronted lemurs – a male and a female aged 15 years and nine years, who arrived in Colwyn Bay quickly settled into their new home.
The walk-through enclosure - the first of its kind in North Wales, will be open to Zoo visitors from 6th April and will provide the opportunity to get within metres of these rare and charming creatures.
The development was made possible thanks to a generous donation of funds by Mr John Blewett – a life member of the Zoological Society of Wales Association.
The enclosure is 900 square metres in size and comprises of a raised walkway running through to a central viewing platform. There is also a designated area of the enclosure partitioned off specifically for an endangered species conservation breeding programme.