Cotswold Wildlife Park’s annual ‘Lemur Week’ takes place this weekend until the 2nd of June to highlight the plight of the world’s most endangered lemurs and to raise awareness and funds for the Park’s conservation projects.
Visitors will have the chance to take part in a variety of lemur-themed activities and learn more about these charismatic primates with daily keeper talks inside the Park’s interactive lemur walk-though exhibit – Madagascar.
Lemurs are native to Madagascar – an ancient island in the Indian Ocean once joined to Africa, but isolated millions of years ago. As a result, it has evolved an eclectic set of highly specialised wildlife – eighty per cent of which is unique to the island.
Cotswold Wildlife Park is home to one of the rarest primate species on earth – the Greater Bamboo Lemur – which the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) have described as the most endangered lemur in Madagascar and one of the top five endangered primates in the world. The Park is also home to another rare and iconic lemur species – the Crowned Sifaka – with both species part of a European Breeding Programme (EEP).
Curator of Cotswold Wildlife Park, Jamie Craig, said: “Lemur species in Madagascar are under tremendous pressure from habitat destruction and the rapidly rising human population. It is vital that we raise awareness for this unique group of primates before it is too late. At Cotswold Wildlife Park, we are committed to conserving this species and we fund an extremely important site in Madagascar as well as participating in several other conservation projects with the Cotswold Wildlife Park Conservation Trust – most notable for the Crowned Sifaka and Greater Bamboo Lemur. We are extremely privileged to keep both of these species at the Park – they are extremely rare in captivity and they are fantastic ambassadors for our fundraising efforts”.
For more information on visiting go to www.cotswoldwildlifepark.co.uk
Photo credits: Simon Needham