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World's oldest known red ruffed lemur dies at Durham museum

Posted April 29, 2016

Courtesy: Museum of Life and Science

Cynthia, the world's oldest known red ruffed lemur, died Thursday at the Museum of Life and Science, her home for more than a decade.

Cynthia had to be euthanized Thursday morning after suddenly declining health, the museum reports. She had turned 35 in March.

Cynthia was born in captivity at Duke University's Lemur Center. She arrived at the museum in 2005 with her daughters, Iris and Jethys, who remain in the Durham museum's Explore the Wild exhibit.

The museum's lemur exhibit is home to seven ring-tailed lemurs and two red ruffed lemurs. The habitat includes a climbing structure, tall trees, ropes and a camera that visitors can operate to get a closer view of these playful creatures.

Red ruffed lemurs are named after the thick ruff that spans their necks, according to the museum. They use a series of at least 12 different sounds to warn of predators. They also have very acute senses of smell, vision and hearing, the museum's website says.

Last year, the museum's beloved Max, the steer, passed away at its farmyard exhibit. It recently added two mini Hereford bulls to its collection there.


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