According to the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™, some 90% of lemur species are threatened with extinction due to habitat destruction caused by slash-and-burn agriculture and illegal logging, as well as hunting. Combined, these pressures have made lemurs the most threatened mammal group on earth.
Considering the universality of the threats and challenges affecting different lemurs species, a coordinated initiative can make a significant difference across many communities and species.
Of the 113 lemur species, 24 are currently listed as ‘Critically Endangered’, 49 are ‘Endangered’ and 20 are ‘Vulnerable’. Consequently, fully implementing the Lemur Conservation Strategy published by the IUCN Species Survival Commission’s Primate Specialist Group represents a unique chance of reversing this decline.
Drawing on the collective expertise of primatologists forming the Primate Specialist Group of the IUCN SSC, the Lemur action plan, published in 2014, evaluated the conservation status of all lemur species and developed a targeted plan to prevent their extinction.
This roadmap to long-term lemur survival identifies 30 priority sites for conservation action together with recommended actions for site specific work to save Madagascar's lemurs from extinction while addressing the needs of communities who also depend on the species' long-term survival.
- 17 Critically Endangered species,
- 15 Endangered species and
- 9 Vulnerable species.
- The initiative also benefits 5 other species which are classified as either Least Concern, Near Threatened or Data Deficient.
Lemur Conservation Strategy