Cheirogaleids Eastern Fork-marked Lemur (Phaner furcifer) Scientific classification Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Chordata Class: Mammalia Order: Primates Suborder: Strepsirrhini Infraorder: Lemuriformes Family: Cheirogaleidae
- Microcebina Gray, 1870[a]
- Cheirogalina Gray, 1872
Cheirogaleids are smaller than the other lemurs and, in fact, they are the smallest primates. They have a soft, long fur colored grey-brown to reddish on top with a generally brighter underbelly. Typically they have small ears, large, close set eyes, and long hind legs. Like all strepsirrhines they have fine claws at the second toe of the hind legs. They grow to a size of only 13 to 28 cm, with a tail that is very long, sometimes up to one and a half times as long as the body. They weigh no more than 500 grams, with some species weighing as little as 60 grams.
Dwarf and mouse lemurs are nocturnal and arboreal. They are excellent climbers and can also jump far, using their long tail for balance. When on the ground (a rare occurrence) they move by hopping on their hind legs. They spend the day in tree hollows or leaf nests. Cheirogaleids are typically solitary but sometimes live together in pairs.
Their eyes possess a tapetum lucidum, a light-reflecting layer that improves their night vision. Some species, such as the Lesser Dwarf Lemur, store fat at the hind legs and the base of the tail and hibernate. Unlike lemurids, they have long upper incisors, although they do have the comb-like teeth typical of all strepsirhines. They have the dental formula:
The females usually have three pairs of nipples. After a meager 60 day gestation, they will bear two to four (usually two or three) young. After five to six weeks these are weaned and become fully mature near the end of their first year or sometime in their second year, depending on the species. In human care, they can live for up to 15 years, although their life expectancy in the wild is probably significantly shorter.
- Infraorder Lemuriformes
- Family Cheirogaleidae
- Genus Cheirogaleus: dwarf lemurs
- C. medius group
- C. major group
- Genus Microcebus: mouse lemurs
- Gray Mouse Lemur, Microcebus murinus
- Reddish-gray Mouse Lemur, Microcebus griseorufus
- Golden-brown Mouse Lemur, Microcebus ravelobensis
- Northern Rufous Mouse Lemur, Microcebus tavaratra
- Sambirano Mouse Lemur, Microcebus sambiranensis
- Simmons' Mouse Lemur, Microcebus simmonsi
- Pygmy Mouse Lemur, Microcebus myoxinus
- Brown Mouse Lemur, Microcebus rufus
- Madame Berthe's Mouse Lemur, Microcebus berthae
- Goodman's Mouse Lemur, Microcebus lehilahytsara
- Jolly's Mouse Lemur, Microcebus jollyae
- MacArthur's Mouse Lemur, Microcebus macarthurii
- Mittermeier's Mouse Lemur, Microcebus mittermeieri
- Claire's Mouse Lemur, Microcebus mamiratra
- Bongolava Mouse Lemur, Microcebus bongolavensis
- Danfoss' Mouse Lemur, Microcebus danfossi
- Arnhold's Mouse Lemur, Microcebus arnholdi 
- Margot Marsh's Mouse Lemur, Microcebus margotmarshae 
- Genus Mirza: giant mouse lemurs
- Genus Allocebus
- Hairy-eared Dwarf Lemur, Allocebus trichotis
- Genus Phaner: fork-crowned lemurs
- Genus Cheirogaleus: dwarf lemurs
- Family Cheirogaleidae
- a According to the letter of the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature, the correct name for this family should be Microcebidae, but the name Cheirogaleidae has been retained for stability.
- b In 2008, 7 new species of Microcebus were formally recognized, but Microcebus lokobensis (Lokobe Mouse Lemur) was not among the additions. Therefore its status as a species is still questionable.
- ^ Groves, C. (2005). Wilson, D. E., & Reeder, D. M, eds. ed. Mammal Species of the World (3rd ed.). Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 111–114. OCLC 62265494. ISBN 0-801-88221-4. http://www.bucknell.edu/msw3/browse.asp?id=12100005.
- ^ a b McKenna, MC; Bell, SK (1997). Classification of Mammals: Above the Species Level. Columbia University Press. pp. 334. ISBN 0-231-11013-6.
- ^ a b Martin, Robert D. (1984). Macdonald, D.. ed. The Encyclopedia of Mammals. New York: Facts on File. pp. 126–127. ISBN 0-87196-871-1.
- ^ a b Mittermeier, R., Ganzhorn, J., Konstant, W., Glander, K., Tattersall, I., Groves, C., Rylands, A., Hapke, A., Ratsimbazafy, J., Mayor, M., Louis, E., Rumpler, Y., Schwitzer, C. & Rasoloarison, R. (December 2008). "Lemur Diversity in Madagascar". International Journal of Primatology 29 (6): 1607–1656. doi:10.1007/s10764-008-9317-y.
- ^ Edward E. Louis, Melissa S. Coles, Rambinintsoa Andriantompohavana, Julie A. Sommer, Shannon E. Engberg, John R. Zaonarivelo, Mireya I. Mayor, Rick A. Brenneman (2006). "Revision of the Mouse Lemurs (Microcebus) of Eastern Madagascar". International Journal of Primatology 27 (2): 347–389. doi:10.1007/s10764-006-9036-1.
- ^ Radespiel, Ute, et al. (2008). "Exceptional diversity of mouse lemurs (Microcebus spp.) in the Makira region with the description of one new species". American Journal of Primatology Forthcoming (11): n/a. doi:10.1002/ajp.20592. PMID 18626970.
- ^ a b c Edward E. Louis, Jr., Shannon E. Engberg, Susie M. McGuire, Marilyn J. McCormick, Richard Randriamampionona, Jean Freddy Ranaivoarisoa, Carolyn A. Bailey, Russell A. Mittermeier and Runhua Lei (2008). "Revision of the Mouse Lemurs, Microcebus(Primates, Lemuriformes), of Northern and Northwestern Madagascar with Descriptions of Two New Species at Montagne d’Ambre National Park and Antafondro Classified Forest". Primate Conservation 2008 (23): 19–38. http://www.primate-sg.org/PDF/PC23.new.microcebus.V3.pdf.
Extant primate families by suborder Strepsirrhini Haplorhini Extant species of family Cheirogaleidae Cheirogaleus
(mouse lemurs)Gray mouse lemur (M. murinus) · Reddish-gray mouse lemur (M. griseorufus) · Golden-brown mouse lemur (M. ravelobensis) · Northern Rufous mouse lemur (M. tavaratra) · Sambirano mouse lemur (M. sambiranensis) · Simmons' mouse lemur (M. simmonsi) · Pygmy mouse lemur (M. myoxinus) · Brown mouse lemur (M. rufus) · Madame Berthe's mouse lemur (M. berthae) · Goodman's mouse lemur (M. lehilahytsara) · Jolly's mouse lemur (M. jollyae) · Mittermeier's mouse lemur (M. mittermeieri) · Claire's mouse lemur (M. mamiratra) · Bongolava mouse lemur (M. bongolavensis) · Danfoss' mouse lemur (M. danfossi) · MacArthur's mouse lemur (M. macarthurii) · Arnhold's mouse lemur (M. arnholdi) · Margot Marsh's mouse lemur (M. margotmarshae)
(Giant mouse lemurs)
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.