Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Lemurs Family Around 100 Species

Lemurs are a clade of strepsirrhine primates nature to the island of Madagascar. They are named later time than the lemures (ghosts or spirits) of Roman mythology because of the ghostly sounds they make, their reflective eyes, and also the nocturnal habits of some species. Although lemurs often are misunderstanding with ancestral primates, the anthropoid primates (monkeys, apes, and humans) did not evolve from them; instead, lemurs merely share morphological and character traits with basal primates.

Lemurs arrived in Madagascar around 62 to 65 million years ago by rafting on mats of vegetation at a time when ocean currents favoured oceanic dispersal to the island. Since that time, lemurs have develop gradually to cope with an extremely seasonal environment and their adaptations give them a level of diversity that rivals that of all other primate groups. Until shortly after humans reached on the island around 2,000 years ago, there were lemurs as large as a male gorilla. Today, there are around 100 species of lemurs.

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