In news– Recently, scientists from the Salim Ali Centre for Ornithology and Natural History (SACON) in Coimbatore recently carried out a survey of slender loris populations in Tamil Nadu’s Dindigul forest division.
About gray slender loris-
- The gray slender loris, a species of primate (Loris lydekkerianus) belongs to the family Loridae.
- It has got a lean and lanky appearance, with longer and slender limbs, larger ears, pointed snout and eyes circled with black or dark brown.
- It is commonly found in the tropical scrub and deciduous forests as well as the dense hedgerow plantations bordering farmlands of Southern India and Sri Lanka.
- It is found in acacia and tamarind-dominated thorn and scrub forests near cultivated fields.
- Of the six species of Lorisinae, the Loris lydekkerianus is found in and around the Ayyalur, Alagarkovil, Manapparai, Sirumalai and Kadavur areas in Tamil Nadu.
- The two species of slender loris are the red slender loris (Loris tardigradus) and the gray slender loris (L. lydekkerianus).
- The sub species of grey slender loris include-
- Malabar slender loris, Loris lydekkerianus malabaricus.
- Mysore slender loris, Loris lydekkerianus lydekkerianus.
- Northern Ceylonese slender loris, Loris lydekkerianus nordicus.
- Highland slender loris, Loris lydekkerianus grandis.
- It is a nocturnal animal and slow-moving animal.
- As the slender loris can’t jump or leap, it requires forest cover with canopy contiguity.
- Generally, it sleeps by day, hiding among foliage or in a hole or crevice. It starts moving from its resting place by dusk.
- Though it is insectivorous, it is fond of lantana berries also.
- It is ‘Endangered’ according to the IUCN’s Red List of Threatened Species.
- It is listed under Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species(CITES) of Wild Fauna and Flora.
- The loris has become threatened mainly because of habitat loss, hunting for the pet trade and for their meat, road kills, superstitious kills and traditional medicine and habitat fragmentation pose serious threats to this primate.