On Saturday 25th September Yorkshire Wildlife Park will be closed to the public due to hosting a special Thank You Event for all the staff at Doncaster & Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals. 

  • Status

    Endangered Species

  • Size

    Up to 2.2kg

  • Threat

    Habitat loss

  • Distribution


  • Diet


Endemic to Madagascar, Ring-tailed lemurs are easy to spot due to their long, striped black and white tails.

Thought to have floated to Madagascar on rafts of vegetation millions of years ago, Lemurs, like many of Madagascan species, have evolved very differently to other animals around the world due to Madagascar’s isolation. Fun fact! It is the females that are dominant in the Lemur world.

Ring-tailed Lemurs use their distinctive tails to to communicate with each other, they will also use them in “stink battles” by rubbing scents on their tails and flicking them at other Lemurs.


Ring-tailed Lemurs are endemic to Madagascar, just off the east coast of Africa. They are mostly found in the dense forests of South West.


Although Lemurs are primates they are not monkeys.

You can often see Lemurs sunbathing in a Buddha-like position, their black skin helps them to absorb the sun’s heat through the fine fur on their stomachs.


Lemurs tend to have 1-2 babies with a gestation period of around 140 days. Ring-tailed lemurs are social animals, living in large groups of up to around 24 individuals. They have a strict female dominant hierarchy.


There are only around 2000 individuals left in the wild. The main threats are habitat loss, hunting, and capture for the illegal pet trade.

Ring-tailed lemurs spend a lot of their time on the ground (as you might notice when you visit the park) foraging for fruit, leaves, flowers, sap and tree bark to eat.

Lemur Woods is also home to Red-bellied Lemurs. One of the most territorial of all Lemurs in Madagascar, Red-bellied Lemurs are categorised as vulnerable on the IUCN Red List.

Red-bellied Lemurs are different to other primates due to their muzzled face and wet nose. Active during both day and night making them a cathemeral species, male Red-bellied Lemurs have a large scent gland on their forehead used to mark territory.

The population of Red-bellied Lemurs is sadly in decline with there believed to only be around 20,000 Red-bellied Lemurs left in the rainforests of Madagascar.

Ring Tailed Lemur(CR. David Roberts)

What's on today

Daily programme

Daily programme at Yorkshire Wildlife Park
Time Event Location
11:00 AM Leaping Lemurs talk! Lemur Woods
2:00 PM Leaping Lemurs talk! Lemur Woods
Lemur Woods Tour

VIP Primates of Africa Tour

Meet five amazingly different primates of Africa on this ranger guided private tour.

Find out more

Meet the Lemurs

Meet the Lemurs

Join our leaping Lemurs, as they scurry all around you during this amazing experience!

Find out more


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