Research Article

A high mountain population of the ring-tailed lemur Lemur catta on the Andringitra Massif, Madagascar

Steven M. Goodmana1 and Olivier Langranda2

a1 World Wide Fund for Nature, BP 738, Antananarivo (101), Madagascar and Field Museum of Natural History, Roosevelt Road at Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, Illinois 60605, USA.

a2 World Wide Fund for Nature, BP 738, Antananarivo (101), Madagascar.


The ring-tailed lemur Lemur catta is generally considered to be a species of dry deciduous forest, gallery forest and spiny thorn scrub at relatively low altitudes. During a survey of the summit zone of the Andringitra Massif, one of the most climatically extreme areas on Madagascar, we recorded this species above the tree-line at 2520 m in an area composed mostly of exposed rock, low ericoid bush and subalpine vegetation. Information was collected on food plants consumed by this species. This pelage coloration of the local population of L. catta differed from museum specimens and photographs taken from other areas of this species's range. The taxonomic status of the Andringitra population is in need of further study.