Northern Sportive Lemur

"Northern Sportive Lemur” by Aleksi Briclot (Traditional & Digital)

It’s impossible to miss the huge amber eyes of the lemur. Close to some cartoons characters, it’s really fascinating!
— Aleksi Briclot

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Northern sportive lemurs live in forests, though they live in both dry and wet climates. Their small population is found in the most northern area of Madagascar. They are arboreal, leaping from tree to tree, as well as nocturnal.

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Family life

Male northern sportive lemurs are solitary while females care and nurture their young. One offspring is born per year. During breeding season, males will seek out all of the females within its territory, defending it aggressively against any other male that it might encounter. The only time a female will leave its young before it reaches maturity is when it goes to forage for food.


The lifespan of the northern sportive lemur has not been studied specifically, but other members of the same genus live an average of eight years.

Hunting Habits/Diet

The northern sportive lemur is a folivorous species; it primarily eats leaves. They will also eat fruits and flowers to supplement their diet. Similarly to the other sportive lemurs, they consume their own feces to digest food for a second time as they have extremely poor digestive systems.


There are only about 50 northern sportive lemurs left in the world.

Fun Fact

They get their name because of the boxer-like stance they assume when threatened. Northern sportive lemurs are one of the smallest varieties of lemurs; they weigh less than two pounds. A small mountain at the northern tip of Madagascar is the only place in the world you can find these elusive creatures.

Why are They Endangered?

The northern sportive lemur is particularly threatened by habitat loss and fragmentation. They are also subject to illegal hunting which can have a significantly negative impact on this already tiny population of lemurs.


Critically Endangered