I was a monkey looking at a lemur.
September 1, 2019 2:45 PM   Subscribe

Happy International Primate Day! Aye-Aye Conservation thinks that you should Know Your Primates (Twitter). What's an aye-aye, you ask? "[T]he Aye-aye is a very very peculiar animal. It looks like the agglomeration of all sorts of other different animals. So, for instance, it has a sort of foxy ears, and it has a little sort of bitty rabbit’s teeth, and it has a kind of ostrich feathered tail, and it has very weird eyes," according to Douglas Adams, who ventured to Madagascar (lecture transcript, embedded video) in search of these rare primates. True Facts about the aye-aye (YT); more facts, videos, and cute photos from the Duke Lemur Center.

My monkey toes salute you, my cousin with the long, thin middle fingers. Here's to Post Your Animal Month.
posted by MonkeyToes (5 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
Oh god. This is my and my bf's favorite/least favorite animal. Like, we hate it because it is repulsive and terrifying but we love it because, wow evolution: you so crazy for this one! We sometimes give each other a light, creepy nail-tip tap before bed--a means of communicating watch out, don't sleep too deep, the aye-aye might get cha! Looks like some great stories in the Douglas Adams lecture so thanks for including that; I've also found some personal serenity recently in embracing the attitude he states at the end: "the world is fine. We don’t have to save the world—the world is big enough to look after itself." Indeed.

Happy International Primate Day, MonkeyToes! My favorites (perhaps somewhat obviously) are the great apes; I love the calm, observational intelligence of orangutans, the stoic strength of gorillas, and the bone-all-day-every-day swinger's life of bonobos. Such a cool part of the evolutionary tree.
posted by youarenothere at 3:18 PM on September 1, 2019 [3 favorites]

long, thin middle fingers.

Boy howdy can they ever go to town on an egg using those:

Aye-ayes Ardrey and Elphaba - Eggs for Breakfast
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 3:22 PM on September 1, 2019 [2 favorites]

Lemur yoga
posted by sammyo at 6:13 PM on September 1, 2019 [2 favorites]

Repetition, with
    the scientist, should be
synonymous with accuracy.
    The lemur-student can see
        that an aye-aye is not
an angwan-tíbo, potto, or loris
—Marianne Moore.
posted by cyanistes at 2:54 AM on September 2, 2019 [1 favorite]

I learned about the aye-aye thanks to a documentary about lemurs that I saw more than 10 years ago. The documentary also informed me that John Cleese is obsessed with lemurs and there is a species named after him: Avahi cleesei.
posted by wicked_sassy at 9:44 AM on September 3, 2019 [1 favorite]

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