We woke to the calming sounds of the lush green jungle surrounding our lodge on all sides. We had a simple continental breakfast while sitting enjoying the stunning views. Today we would be going to the Parc National Andasibe- Analamazaotra and were looking forward to seeing some lemurs in the wild!
After just a short walk into the forest with our guide we met our first wild lemurs. These were the fun little Diademed Sifakas, they are some of the most beautiful with their red eyes and tan/white and grey fur markings. These guys are hams! They were playing on the ground and not at all scared of the small group that had gathered to watch. We stuck around watching these little guys jump through the trees eating greenery until it was just us and the lemurs
It wasn’t until we heard the loud haunting "singing" calls of the Indri-Indri lemur that we decided to move on. Our guide helped track them though the trees and even pointed out the best spots to get a few photos. They are black and white with bright yellow eyes. Indri-Indris are the largest of all lemurs and have a strong voice that can carry through the forest for up to 3km.
Note: The Indri- Indri is on The World's 25 Most Endangered Primates…the country with the most species on the Endangered Primates list is Madagascar with six species
We hope that learning more about these beautiful creatures and the places they live will increase awareness about this serious problem!
They are fast and not as easy to see because they stay fairly high in the trees during the day. We caught some glimpses of a mom and baby through the branches. Some of them were jumping through the trees, can you believe they can jump up to 30 feet!?
Our guide pointed out a family of adorable group of common brown lemurs huddled up in a tree. So easy to miss if you weren’t paying attention.
We also spotted smaller creatures like the Crab Spider and the blue berries and the flies that look like white fur until they mature.
Then we headed on to a dirt road for about 30-40 minutes to Perinet and the Mantadia park. On the way Haj our driver spotted a cute chameleon on the road so we stopped to rescue him and move him to the side of the road so he wouldn’t get run over (since they move really slowly).
Perinet was much harder hiking and I think we where the only three people in the park. We had a relaxing brown bag lunch on a lookout platform and enjoyed listening to Indri-Indri calls in the distance. We walked deeper and deeper into the jungle trying to spot lemurs and other wildlife.
We saw some more Diademed Sifakas hanging out together and kept following the loud sounds of the Black and White-Ruffed Lemurs. We finally spotted them sitting on a branch high above. There’s something so special about seeing animals in the wild and having to hike to earn a few minutes with them before they move on, disappearing into the jungle.
We had already seen so much and I think we’ve filled up an entire memory card but we have another big stop today…lemur island.
This is a small island with 3 types of lemurs living on it. The first was the Black and White Ruffed Lemur and it greeted Ruby by walking over and jumping on her head. The next curious species to come by and see who was on their island was the Common Brown Lemur.
These guys where very playful and some of them even had babies climbing around in the trees with them!
Ruby unexpectedly picked up a new fur shawl out there!
The Black and White Ruffed lemurs were also very friendly!
After a little searching we found the shyest of the locals on the island, the Lesser Eastern Bamboo Lemur. These little gray furred guys are beautiful and so photogenic. If you would like to see lemurs up close we would definitely recommend stopping on the island and having a lemur sit on your head LOL!
On the drive back our driver surprised us by making a sunset stop at Reserve Vakona Croc farm. This place was insane, there were Non- OSHA approved cable bridges, gorgeous crocs, happier fossas, birds 4’ high fences with signs that say don’t walk down this way or you’ll get eaten…3rd World Safety we suppose
We got to watch the crocs being fed raw meat and loved getting some close ups of their piercing eyes.
After a day like this we needed some cold beer while enjoying the views from our porch!
We ended this long day with a Night Walk around Eulophiella! WOW, I don’t think we’ve ever seen so many spiders, geckos or chameleons in our lives! We also got to see the red-eyes of some mouse lemurs reflecting in the trees but they were too high up to get a good shot.