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Discovery of a new species of lemur

Discovery of a new species of lemur #Lémurien #Madagascar #MyMadagascar #MahajangaMaVille

Discovery of a new species of lemur

Good news, a group of scientists announces the discovery of a new species of lemur in Madagascar : « Microcebus jonahi ».

Hope after the release of the alarming update to the IUCN Red List on Endangered Species.

Microcebus jonahi - Photo by Dominik Scheln

Microcebus jonahi – Photo by Dominik Scheln

“Microcebus jonahi” or “Jonah’s Mausmaki”, one of the smallest species of primates in the world

A group of scientists from six different countries discovered a new species of lemur mouse in Madagascar.

The research team examined the diversity of mouse lemurs in the rainforests of northeastern Madagascar. Doing so, they discovered a species of mouse lemur hitherto unknown. This increases the number of species described 25.

We now know 113 lemur species endemic to Madagascar. This new species was discovered in the Mananara-Nord National Park, Antsiradrano and Madera Community Forest, to the northeast of Madagascar.

Her name is Jonah's Mausmaki, or “Microcebus jonahi”. With a total length from the tip of the nose to the tail of’about 26 centimeters and a body weight’about 60 Grams, she's here’one of the world's smallest primate species.

In honor of Professor Jonah Ratsimbazafy

The new species is named after the primatologist malagasy, Professor Jonah Ratsimbazafy. His long and tireless efforts to protect the country's natural resources and preserve species and their habitats have made him a model for an entire generation.

"The newly discovered species bears his name in his honour", explains Radespiel.

Through collaboration with international scientists, several years of research this small lemur was discovered. They unanimously decided to put the name of Prof. Jonah Ratsimbazafy (GERP President, IPS, and one of the founders of Madagascar Lemurs Portal)

He is best known to all as the valiant voice-bearer of our dear lemurs by his determination, his passion, his love and rigour in his fight for the protection of these iconic species for the future generation.

Total, 29 scientists from Germany, de France, Portugal, Australia, Madagascar and the United States participated in the ongoing work.

"Without intensive cooperation between the experts involved, this discovery and its validation would not have been possible", says Radespiel.

When this new species was discovered, Professor Dr. Ute Radespiel of the Institute of Zoology and PhD student Dominik Scheller of the University of Hildesheim played a key role.

Other cooperation projects have already been launched. The goal is to understand the diversity of mouse lemurs, to decode their history and thus contribute to their sustainability.

Habitat loss threatens biodiversity

Mouse lemurs are lemurs belonging to primates and more closely to the group of wet-nosed monkeys. More than 100 species of lemurs are known so far. They occur only in Madagascar and some species also on smaller islands nearby.

Nocturnal and generally commonly common animals are only present in a small area of the lowland rainforests of northeastern Madagascar.

According to Radespiel : "Although Jonah's lemur mouse is only scientifically described, it is unfortunately already in danger of extinction. The loss of natural habitats and the constant change in land use in the region lead to the isolation of small populations. This promotes their disappearance. »

But according to the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development, this discovery is a sign that we can still save our biodiversity.

"It carries a radiant message, because there is still hope. Much remains to be discovered. And many hidden treasures are at your fingertips. Madagascar is like the big red X on a treasure map. It's up to us to explore it, to protect him and find every joyous one in it." says The Group for Research and Research on Primates of Madagascar (GERP).

Let's protect them !

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Source : Foundation of hanover University of Veterinary Medicine(27/07/20)

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