Tuesday 21 November 2017

Zoo's novel idea on breeding lemurs

Bristol Zoo Gardens hopes lemur Christian Grey will prove a hit with his female companions
Bristol Zoo Gardens hopes lemur Christian Grey will prove a hit with his female companions

A British zoo is hoping its very own "Mr Grey" will be a hit with the ladies as they introduce the critically endangered lemur to their females.

Bristol Zoo Gardens welcomed the lemur, named Christian Grey after the fictional character in the best-selling book Fifty Shades Of Grey, on November 7.

Mr Grey has already won the hearts of the female members of staff at the zoo and they hope he will be just as popular with a new female lemur who will join him later this month from a zoo in France.

The handsome grey Alaotran gentle lemur arrived from Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust, which manages a breeding programme for the lemurs.

At four years old, Mr Grey is the perfect age for breeding, a zoo spokeswoman said.

Lynsey Bugg, assistant curator of mammals, added: "Our current pair of lemurs are now too old for breeding and so to continue with the programme we have taken on a second, younger pair in the hope that they will continue our success."

Mr Grey is the grandson of Isabo - Bristol Zoo's elderly male lemur who still lives at the zoo. He is a member of one of the most critically endangered species of lemur in Madagascar.

There are just 5,000 of the animals in the wild and they all live in one area which makes them particularly susceptible to extinction risks.

Bristol Zoo is part of a breeding programme for Alaotran gentle lemurs that began in 1990 and is managed by Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust.

The captive population is currently around 95 animals in 24 European zoos.

Press Association

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