A Turlock resident stumbled upon a ring-tailed lemur who appears to have been a victim of the illegal animal trade.
“Nobody in the area who is supposed to have a lemur is missing a lemur,” Sacramento Zoo spokesperson Tonja Candelabra told the Sacramento Bee. “We are assuming that someone illegally purchased this lemur, had him at their house and he escaped or was let loose.”
Go, lemur! Go!
This past December, someone in Turlock discovered an adorable creature in their backyard. The quick-thinking Turlock animal lover matched their backyard visitor with some Google imaging and figured out that their guest was a ring-tailed lemur. Ring-tailed lemurs are an endangered species and live in Madagascar, not Turlock.
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife, who you might remember from their recent Haight Street raid, captured the lemur and brought him to the "wildly inspiring" Sacramento Zoo, which will providing temporary housing until they can find a permanent home for the little guy.
The Sacramento Zoo doesn't have any other ring-tailed lemurs and since the species are social creatures, they're hoping to place the brave escapee somewhere safe with other members of his squad. “He doesn’t understand normal lemur social skills,” Candelabra told the Bee.
According to the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, illegal animal trading is a multi-billion dollar business "involving the unlawful harvest of and trade in live animals and plants or parts and products derived from them. Wildlife is traded as skins, leather goods or souvenirs; as food or traditional medicine; as pets, and in many other forms. Illegal wildlife trade runs the gamut from illegal logging of protected forests to supply the demand for exotic woods, to the illegal fishing of endangered marine life for food, and the poaching of elephants to supply the demand for ivory."
According to everyone, lemurs are adorbs.