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Our 17-year-old female ring-tailed lemur, Andromeda, was humanely euthanized Jan. 5.

 

We are sad to announce that our 17-year-old female ring-tailed lemur, Andromeda, was humanely euthanized Jan. 5. Keepers observed bleeding in Andromeda’s mouth Jan. 2, and she was transported to the vet hospital. Zoo veterinarians discovered lesions on her gums and an ulcer on the tip of her tongue. Bloodwork revealed her kidney disease—first diagnosed in 2013—had worsened. Keepers and veterinarians closely monitored her for any signs of discomfort or worsening of her condition. Unfortunately, she showed no signs of clinical improvement Jan. 5, and animal care staff made the decision to euthanize her based on her quality of life. According to animal keeper Becky Malinsky, Andromeda was an independent animal who often chose to be the outlier in the troop. Frequently, she would sunbathe in the early morning—a species-typical behavior. Andromeda, named for the Greek goddess, arrived at the National Zoo in Sept. 2001 from the Duke Lemur Center. Andromeda did not have any offspring, yet she served as an ambassador for her species by educating Zoo visitors, keepers, and scientists about the social nature and behaviors of ring-tailed lemurs. Visitors can see two ring-tailed lemurs, Gelon and Ninna, at the Lemur Island exhibit.

Posted by Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute on Tuesday, January 6, 2015