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Lepilemur ruficaudatus

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA MAMMALIA PRIMATES LEPILEMURIDAE

Scientific Name: Lepilemur ruficaudatus
Species Authority: A. Grandidier, 1867
Common Name(s):
English Red-tailed Sportive Lemur, Lesser Weasel Lemur
French Petit Lépilémur

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable B1ab(i,iii,v) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2014
Date Assessed: 2012-07-11
Assessor(s): Andriaholinirina, N., Baden, A., Blanco, M., Chikhi, L., Cooke, A., Davies, N., Donati, G., Ganzhorn, J., Golden, C., Groeneveld, L.F., Hapke, A., Irwin, M., Johnson, S., Kappeler, P., King, T., Lewis, R., Louis, E.E., Markolf, M., Mass, V., Mittermeier, R.A., Nichols, R., Patel, E., Rabarivola, C.J., Raharivololona, B., Rajaobelina, S., Rakotoarisoa, G., Rakotomanga, B., Rakotonanahary, J., Rakotondrainibe, H., Rakotondratsimba, G., Rakotondratsimba, M., Rakotonirina, L., Ralainasolo, F.B., Ralison, J., Ramahaleo, T., Ranaivoarisoa, J.F., Randrianahaleo, S.I., Randrianambinina, B., Randrianarimanana, L., Randrianasolo, H., Randriatahina, G., Rasamimananana, H., Rasolofoharivelo, T., Rasoloharijaona, S., Ratelolahy, F., Ratsimbazafy, J., Ratsimbazafy, N., Razafindraibe, H., Razafindramanana, J., Rowe, N., Salmona, J., Seiler, M., Volampeno, S., Wright, P., Youssouf, J., Zaonarivelo, J., Zaramody, A. & Dolch, R.
Reviewer(s): Schwitzer, C. & Molur, S.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Chiozza, F. & Kerhoas, D.
Justification:
The estimated extent of occurrence (EOO) of this species is between 15,900 and 23,330 km2. This geographic range is severely fragmented and undergoing continuing decline in extent of occurrence and area, extent and quality of habitat. The number of mature individuals is also known to be in decline. Based on these premises and on precautionary principle, the species is listed as Vulnerable.
History:
1994 Rare (Groombridge 1994)
1990 Rare (IUCN 1990)
1990 Rare (IUCN 1990)
1988 Insufficiently Known (IUCN Conservation Monitoring Centre 1988)
1986 Insufficiently Known (IUCN Conservation Monitoring Centre 1986)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is found in western Madagascar. At present it is known to occur in the Menabe-Antimena Reserve and in the Andranomena and Kasijy Special Reserves, between the Tsiribihina and Morondava rivers. It may also occur in the Kirindy Mitea National Park between the Kambatomena and Mangoky Rivers (Bachmann et al. 2000, Andriaholinirina et al. 2006, Mittermeier et al. 2010). The estimated extent of occurrence (EOO) of this species is between 15,900 and 23,330 km².


Countries:
Native:
Madagascar
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Population densities of 180–350 individuals/km2 have been estimated in the Marosalaza forests, and 88–160 individuals/km2 in Kirindy (Zinner et al. 2003). Population numbers are in decline due to habitat loss (Mittermeier et al. 2010).
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species is found in subtropical and tropical dry lowland deciduous forest (from sea level to 900 m), as well as gallery forest and bush. This species has been described as a leaf-eater, although it also feeds on fruits in season, especially Diospyros (Ebenaceae) during the summer months. In the Kirindy Forest, where Avahi is not sympatric with it, it feeds on leaves of high nutritional value. However, in areas where Avahi and Lepilemur coexist, Avahi typically eat the higher quality leaves. Whereas the chemical composition of leaves chosen by males and females does not seem to differ, females in one study chose fruits with lower fibre content than did the males. Mating occurs from May to July, and a single infant is born between September and November. The infant is initially transported by the mother's mouth, and “parked” on a branch or in a tree hole while she forages. Infants are weaned at about 50 days. Fathers provide no parental care (Hilgartner et al. 2008).

This species has one of the lowest resting metabolic rates recorded for any mammalian species. Indeed, in areas where their habitat has been logged these animals will frequently die simply because they lack the dietary energy necessary to move to more distant trees. The animals reduce their nightly travel distances in the cold dry season (Mittermeier et al. 2013).

Home range sizes are at or below one hectare, and do not differ between males and females. Adults are organized into pairs, but they rarely interact and spend very little time in close proximity to each other. Home ranges of the pair partners coincide, with little overlap with the home ranges of neighbouring pairs. The animals spend the day in tree holes and can often be seen sunbathing at the entrance. Nightly travel distances are 100–1,000 m (Mittermeier et al. 2013).

Systems: Terrestrial

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is heavily hunted for food.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Major threats to this species are habitat loss and reduction in extent of occurrence (EOO) due to expanding livestock populations, forest fires, and charcoal production. It is also heavily hunted for food throughout much of its range.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species is listed on Appendix I of CITES. Protected areas where it is known to occur include at least one national park (Isalo), (and perhaps also Kirindy Mitea), and two special reserves (Andranomena and Kasijy). It is found as well in the Kirindy Forest (part of the Menabe-Antimena Protected Area), and possibly in Tsingy de Namoroka National Park.

Citation: Andriaholinirina, N., Baden, A., Blanco, M., Chikhi, L., Cooke, A., Davies, N., Donati, G., Ganzhorn, J., Golden, C., Groeneveld, L.F., Hapke, A., Irwin, M., Johnson, S., Kappeler, P., King, T., Lewis, R., Louis, E.E., Markolf, M., Mass, V., Mittermeier, R.A., Nichols, R., Patel, E., Rabarivola, C.J., Raharivololona, B., Rajaobelina, S., Rakotoarisoa, G., Rakotomanga, B., Rakotonanahary, J., Rakotondrainibe, H., Rakotondratsimba, G., Rakotondratsimba, M., Rakotonirina, L., Ralainasolo, F.B., Ralison, J., Ramahaleo, T., Ranaivoarisoa, J.F., Randrianahaleo, S.I., Randrianambinina, B., Randrianarimanana, L., Randrianasolo, H., Randriatahina, G., Rasamimananana, H., Rasolofoharivelo, T., Rasoloharijaona, S., Ratelolahy, F., Ratsimbazafy, J., Ratsimbazafy, N., Razafindraibe, H., Razafindramanana, J., Rowe, N., Salmona, J., Seiler, M., Volampeno, S., Wright, P., Youssouf, J., Zaonarivelo, J., Zaramody, A. & Dolch, R. 2014. Lepilemur ruficaudatus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 31 July 2014.
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