'Archaeoindris,' very large lemur with a bulky body slouched in a gorilla's standing posture holds some leaves it is eating. 'Babakotia,' giant lemur hangs from a tree limb by all four feet like a slow-moving sloth. The tail is short, and the arms are slightly longer than the legs. 'Giant aye-aye,' he size of a mid-sized dog, with vertical strips on its face, long fingers, and a furry tail 'Megaladapis edwardsi,' life restoration based on photos of skeletal remains and supported with correspondence with Dr. Laurie Godfrey 'Hadropithecus,' giant lemur walks on all four feet, with a long dark tail held in the air. The head has a short snout (for a lemur) and white ruffed fur running from around the ears to the jaw. 'Archaeolemur,' life restoration based on published articles and Dr. Laurie Godfrey

Lemurs of Madagascar

What do we know? We think ancient species died out after humans arrived on Madagascar, due to hunting and loss of habitat. Remains of many are limited to a few subfossil bones. Many were related to the indri, sifakas, and woolly lemurs. * The Archaeoindris and Babakotia were sloth lemurs. They ate leaves, fruit, and seeds. * The Giant aye-aye is like the living aye-eye only twice the size or larger. Aye-ayes find food by tapping on trees, gnawing holes, and using their narrow middle fingers to pull out grubs. * The Megaladapis or koala lemur, the largest of the extinct lemurs, was built like the modern koala, adapted to live in trees. Its nasal region was elongated and probably associated with a large upper lip for grasping leaves, and its eyes were on the sides of its head. * The Hadropithecus and Archaeolemur were the extinct monkey lemurs with more terrestrial lifestyles living in open habitats. * The incisors of the Archaeolemur could remove hard shells and rinds from sees and fruit. Their adaptability could explain why they were the last of the ancient lemurs to have become extinct. * The living lemurs are beautiful primates, unrelated to monkeys or apes, with long tails, large eyes, and wet noses. Carl Linnaeus named them after the ghosts that ancient Romans thought that they had exorcised.