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Your morning adorable: Coquerel's sifakas at the Bronx Zoo

July 23, 2009 | 11:43 am

Coquerel's sifaka

When we think of lemurs, images of cute ring-tailed creatures leap to mind. But another type of lemur is perhaps equally adorable, if less familiar: the coquerel's sifaka. This Coquerel's sifaka and her baby are residents of the Madagascar exhibit at New York's Bronx Zoo

The sifaka, like the tiny dik-dik antelope, has an onomatopoeic name -- the Malagasy people of Madagascar so named the species because it makes a call that sounds like "shif-auk."  (They share the Madagascar exhibit with a number of other interestingly-named species -- the Madagascar hissing cockroach, the radiated tortoise and the Nile crocodile, to name a few.) 

Sifakas' style of movement differs from that of many other primates: They propel themselves from tree branch to tree branch with their hind legs rather than swinging with their arms as many other primates do. In fact, sifakas' legs are so powerful they can jump distances of 30 feet or more. 

There are three species of sifaka, all of which are threatened by deforestation in Madagascar. See a video of coquerel's sifakas at the Bronx Zoo after the jump!

-- Lindsay Barnett

Photo: Julie Larsen Maher / Associated Press. Video: WCSMedia via YouTube

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