Today I am writing about my Lemur experience at Wingham Wildlife Park.
I went on the 17th February 2020 with my brother Jacob and my Mum who shared the experience with me. When it was time for us to start, we met the Lemur keeper at the entrance to the Lemur walk-through. He told us a few do’s and don’ts for while we were with the Lemurs. He told us that we were allowed to stroke them but to make sure we stroked their backs and didn’t touch their faces and tails. We were also told to be careful when walking around and to make sure that we didn’t step on their long, fluffy tails. He told us that one of the lemurs was grumpy and would not like us touching her as much as the others would. Her name is Molly, just like me (and the stunning Bornean Orang-utan who is called Molly too!)
The keeper gave us each a big bowl of food each and in the bowl were carrots and pellets. We went in to the Lemur walk-through and the food immediately caught their attention the moment we walked in. They came running over to us and started reaching out to us with their hands. I walked up to a lemur and stroked it. The lemur pulled the bowl towards it and reached its hand into the bowl and went straight for the carrot. I thought it was really cute watching the lemur nibble on the carrot. All the other Lemurs were sat close by or going up to my Mum and brother and doing the same thing. All the lemurs seemed to like the carrot the best and we asked the keeper if they did like it best and he said that they did.
We talked to the keeper the whole time we were with the Lemurs and asked lots of questions and found out lots of interesting facts about the lemurs at Wingham. The lemurs at Wingham are ring tailed lemurs and in the wild, they are only found in Madagascar. There are seven lemurs that live at Wingham and their names are Lulu, Leah, Babs, Minx, Alex, Flo and Molly. Lulu is the oldest of them all and she was born in 1998. Alex is the only boy and all the rest are girls. In captivity lemurs can live for up to 30 years and in the wild they live for 16-19 years. I was amazed that the keeper knew which lemur was which just by quickly looking at them because he knows them some well and can see the little differences. He told us about some of these differences; one of them was that two of the female lemurs had slightly shorter tails than the rest of them as they had to have part of it removed. I found this really interesting as I wouldn’t have noticed this if I hadn’t been told. My favourite lemur was Babs because she seemed to like me and was really gentle and kind when I was stroking her.
I really enjoyed being able to stroke and feed the lemurs. Their fur was soft and fuzzy and felt nice and snuggly to touch. Their eyes were bright and alert and an orangey-red colour making them really stand out against the grey of their fur. And their hands are just like human hands with long thin fingers but their hands are slightly hairier than ours!
Towards the end of our time with the lemurs only two or three of them were still hungry and they finished off the last of the pellets and carrots in our bowls. The keeper explained that their little tummies were probably full now which was why they were starting to all go to their bed and only a few were left finishing off our food. Once the food was all gone, the lemurs all went into their snuggly indoor home and cuddled up together in the warm.
Thank you to Wingham for inviting me and my family to have the Lemur experience. We all really enjoyed ourselves and felt very lucky to get so close to all the lemurs and to find out all the fun facts about them!