Recommended Readings & Videos
Updated April 18, 1998
- Lemurs of Madagascar
and the Comorans F. McIntyre, World Biodiversity Database,
Springer-Verlag, New York ($71.95). This is a CD-ROM (Windows and Mac
versions). It is not clear whether it is available yet.
- Lemurs of Madagascar by Russell
Mittermeier, Ian Tattersall, William Konstant, David Meyers and Roderic Mast.
1994 (Conservation International). This is an excellent, field-guide sized book
to lemurs, their identification, natural history, and conservation status. Very
detailed information which is very current.
- Lemurs of Madagascar and the Comoros : the IUCN red data
bookby Catherine Harcourt ($38)
- Lemurs of Madagascar: An Action Plan for their Conservation,
1993-1999by Russell Mittermeier, W.G. Kinzeqy and R.B. Mast. 1992. IUCN/SSC
Primate Specialist Group, Gland, Switzerland.
- Lemurs of the lost world : exploring the forests and Crocodile
Caves of Madagascar, by Jane Wilson, (published in U.K. by Impact/Harrap,
available in U.S. from P.O. Box 287, Great Falls VA 22066 (for $11?)
- The Lemur's Legacy, the evolution of power, sex, and love,
Robert Jay Russell, 1993 (Tarcher/Putnam Books). This very ambitious book is
strongest when it describes the social behavior of the oft-neglected mouse
lemurs, and most speculative when it extrapolates those findings to
- The Encyclopedia of Mammals, edited by David Macdonald 1984
(Facts on File Press). The chapter on lemurs by Alison Richard and J.I. Pollock
are quite good.
Books for the General Reader:
- Primates - Lemurs, Monkeys, and You by Ian Tattersall. This
little book contains a remarkable amount of scientific information about the
evolution and diversity of primates in a readable format. It also contains
great photographs of many of the different species. (Millbrook Press,
- Gerald Durrell, The Aye-aye and I, 1992
(Arcade Publishing). This wonderful British humorist/zookeeper/scientist and
warm-hearted observer of humanity is at the top of his form in this delightful
account of his recent expedition to Madagascar. Great descriptions of gentle
lemurs and aye-ayes. Now available in paperback.
- Gerald Durrell, Ark on the Move, 1983 (Coward-McCann, Inc.,
New York). A lovely little book about Madagascar & Mauritius.
- Douglas Adams, Last Chance to See, 1994? The author of The
Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy travels to far-off spots to see animals
that are in grave danger of extinction. Very interesting stuff about
- Jane Wilson, Lemurs of the lost world: exploring the forests and
Crocodile Caves of Madagascar.
College Textbooks with good information about prosimians:
- The Evolution of Primate Behavior by
Alison Jolly, 2d ed. (1985) MacMillan
- Primates in Nature by Alison F. Richard
(1985) W.H. Freeman. This is an integrated overview of primate behavioral
ecology, including biogeography, feeding habits, social ecology. Exceptionally
well written and illustrated.
- Primate Societies ed. by Smuts,
Cheney, Seyfarth, Wrangham and Struhsaker (Univ. of Chicago Press, 1987)
Children's Books & Magazine Articles:
- Zoe Wilmot and David Anstey, Hook A Book Lemur. This book is
written for 2-3 year olds, I guess, and is printed on that thick,
cardboard-like paper, so even though it's 3/4 inches thick it only has about 6
pages. The cover features a ring tailed lemur. His tail forms a hook that juts
out from the top of the book. (Hence the term "Hook-a-book," and hence the
cardboard paper.) At the bottom, his hands join together forming a handle, a
handle that's just the right size for a tiny hand to hold on to the book.
- Ranger Rick (November 1992). The entire magazine issue is
devoted to Madagascar. Worth the trip to the library to find.
- Eep! It's an Aye-Aye by David Haring in Wildlife
Conservation (March/April 1996 issue). Excellent article, check it
- Lost Lemurs of the Crocodile Caves by Elwyn Simons,
scientific director of DUPC, in The Sciences (pages 6-8 in
November/December 1993). An article recent excavations of fossil and subfossil
lemurs in Madagascar.
- "Portfolio" BBC Wildlife (August 1993). This is for you
British lemur fans out there. There's a beautiful photo spread taken by David
Haring, the colony manager of DUPC. Highly recommended
- Madagascar's Lemurs, by Ian Tattersall in Scientific
American 268(1):110-117 (January 1993).
- Seeing Is Believing another article by David Haring in
ZooLife (Fall 1992). An excellent article focusing on DUPC's Ivoloina
project in Madagascar.
- The Delicate Leaf-eaters of Duke by David Haring in
Wildlife Conservation (May/June 1992 issue). Excellent article about the
- Lemurs in the Midst by Richard Bangs in Wildlife
Conservation (May/June 1992 issue). A look at some conservation problems in
- ZooView (Winter 1992) Entire issue is devoted to Madagascar
wildlife. Articles by David Anderson on the Madagascar Fauna Group, and by
Jennie McNary and Fran Woods about zoo care for lemurs in the US and in
- A Murder in Madagascar by David Quammen in Audubon
(January 1991, pp.48-58. An account of the murder of Bedo, a nature guide at
Perinet in 1990, which talks about the challenges of ecotourism in a country as
poor as Madagascar.
- A Necklace of Pearls: Saving Madagascar by Alison Jolly,
photographs by Frans Lanting in Orion Nature Quarterly (Fall 1990).
- Madagascar's Lemurs: On the Edge of Survival by Alison Jolly
in National Geographic (August 1988, pages 132-161). Dr. Jolly was one
of the first researchers to study lemur behavior in the wild. Excellent photos
- Lemurs Lost and Found by Patricia Wright in Natural
History (July 1988, pages 56-60). A description of the rediscovery of the
golden bamboo lemur Hapalemur aureus.
- Madagascar: A World Apart by Allison Jolly and Frans Lanting
in National Geographic (February 1987).
- Island of the Lemur, by former DUPC director Michael Stuart in
Animal Kingdom (Feb/March 1985).
- Defenders of Wildlife April 1975. An extraordinary all-color
issue devoted entirely to Madagascar. A real treasure.
- The Wilds of Madagascar. National
Geographic Society, 17th and M Streets, Washington, D.C. 1988. 60 minutes.
- Spirits of the Forest shown on PBS'
NATURE program in the U.S. Produced by the BBC (60 minutes, 1987). This is a
general view overview of nature in Madagascar. Many species of lemurs are
shown, but most of the focus is on ringtail lemurs and sifakas.
- Madagascar: Island of Ghosts shown on
PBS' NATURE Produced by Survival Anglia (60 minutes. 1991). This film
appropriately has a heavy emphasis on conservation problems and efforts. Uses
Malagasy music by Rossy as background. Terrific footage of the fossa, giant
jumping rat, Madagascar harrier hawk, chameleons, plowshare tortoise, and
insects. Good footage of the Ankarana massif. Lemurs featured: Sanford's
lemurs, crowned lemurs, indris, Verreaux's and Coquerel sifakas, Golden-crowned
sifaka. Intelligent discussion of local human needs and Malagasy culture.
Includes brief footage of a Famadihana.
- Dance of the Sifaka shown on "Wild
World" on PBS on 10/15/96 (Partridge Films, Ltd. 1996). 30 minutes. This film
follows a single family of Verreaux's sifakas at Berenty Preserve in southern
Madagascar. Beautiful close-up photography of these animals and the focus on
one family shows many behaviors in context.
Natural History and Culture: Books
- Madagascar, A Natural History, by Ken
Preston-Mafham, 1991 (Facts on File Press). This is a superb book, combining
the best single overview of Madagascar's natural history with stunning photos
by the author. This has very good treatment of the plants, invertebrates, and
birds of Madagascar as well as lemurs and other mammals. This book should be
easy to find.
- Madagascar, a World Out of Time, by
Frans Lanting. 1990 (Aperture) This is a classic coffee-table book with
striking and stylized photos by this well-known wildlife photographer. Includes
essays by Alison Jolly and John Mack.
- A World Like Our Own, Man and Nature in
Madagascar, by Alison Jolly, 1980 (Yale University Press). One of
the first, and best, general books about Madagascar and conservation
- Madagascar, Island of the Ancestors, by
John Mack, 1986, British Museum of Natural History. A very interesting
paperback about Malagasy culture. May be available only from the British
- Madagascar, (ed.) by Hilary Bradt,
1988, Aston Publications. A lovely little picture book published in England.
Good luck trying to find it!
- Muddling Through in Madagascar, by
Hilary Bradt. 1985. Amazing account of Ms. Bradt's first trip to Madagascar
when she walked virtually across the country with her young daughter. A classic
travel book, but hard to find, particularly in the U.S.
Natural History and Culture: Magazines
- The Lizard Wizard by Hannah Holmes in Wildlife
Conservation pp. 22-29. (April 1997) An article about Christopher Raxworthy
and his study of reptiles and amphibians in Madagascar.
- Madagascar's Buried Treasure by Scott Sampson, David W.
Krause, and Catherine A. Forster in Natural History pp. 24-27 (March
1997). Story of very recent discoveries of dinosaur bones and very early bird
fossils in Madagascar.
- Madagascar, Wildlife Smuggler's Haven by Kendra Toby (photos
by DUPC's Connie Bransilver) in Canadian Wildlife pp. 22-25 (Nov/Dec
- Otherworldly Madagascar by Peter Tyson in Atlantic
Monthly (January 1996)
- Night of the Screaming Lizard by Peter Tyson in
Earthwatch (May/June 1994, pp. 25-31). An account of an Earthwatch study
of reptiles in the Lokobe Reserve near Nosy Be with a nice discussion of
integrated conservation and development.
- The Island as Planet by Tom Huth, photographs by Knut Bry in
Conde Nast Traveler (August 1991)
- Alive and Well in Tsimanampetsotsa by W. Chris Wozencraft in
Natural History (December 1990) pp. 28-30. The discovery of a new
species of mongoose in 1989, the Grandidier's mongoose (Galidictus
grandidieri) in southwestern Madagascar.
- Mysterious Island: What Killed Madagascar's Large Native
Animals? by David A. Burney, and Ross D.E. MacPhee in Natural
History (July 1988), pp. 46-55.
- Lemurs of Madagascar (see listing above) This is much better
than the generalized treatment of lemurs in some of the East African mammal
- Madagascar Wildlife--A Visitor's Guide,
by Hilary Bradt, Nick Garbutt, and Derek Schuurman. 1996. (Bradt Publications
[UK], Globe-Pequot Press [USA $19.95] A profusely illustrated guide to the
wildlife and the best places to see it in Madagascar. 200 color photos with
excellent coverage of not only lemurs, but also the reptiles and insects. Small
enough to take with you on your trip.
- Birds of Madagascar, by Olivier
Langrand, 1990 (Yale Univ. Press). Since 70 percent of Madagascar's birds are
endemic, this is your only choice for a bird guide. It is an excellent book,
but unfortunately rather large to carry with you ($60).
- A Fieldguide to the Amphibians and Reptiles of
Madagascar, 2nd Ed. (1994) by Frank Glaw and Miguel Vences. It is
available in the USA from Serpent's Tale (telephone (612) 470-5008) for about
$65. It has an amazing amount of information including not only photos and
distribution maps for the amphibians and reptiles but also discussions and b/w
photos of invertebrates, material on lemurs, bats, fishes, etc.
- Guide to Madagascar (5th ed). by Hilary Bradt, 1997, (Bradt
Publications UK, or Globe-Pequot Press in the USA) An excellent and detailed
guide that includes good discussions of the natural history and culture of the
- Lonely Planet Guide to Madagascar and the Comoros, 2d edition
- "Calls of the Wild" by Simon K. Bearder in Natural History
104(8):48-57 (August 1995). (spectacular pictures of galagos)
- "Lorises, bushbabies, and tarsiers: diverse societies in solitary
forages" by Simon K . Bearder, pp. 11-24 in Primate Societies ed. by
Smuts et al. Univ. of Chicago Press, 1987.
- Gremlins of the Night (video) produced by _______ (199_). 60
minutes. Excellent video with a brief overview of lorises and a focus on newly
discovered species of galagos.
- The Encyclopedia of Mammals, edited by David Macdonald 1984
(Facts on File Press). The chapters on lorises, galagos and pottos by Pierre
Charles-Dominique is quite good.
- See Alterman et al. in scientific reading.
- Goodman, S.M and B.D. Patterson (eds.) 1997. Natural Change and
Human Impact in Madagascar. Academic Press. 92 b&w illus, 434 pp. ($75
cloth, $35 paper)
- Bransfield, J. and H. J. Beentje. 1996.
Madagascar For the first time ever all the known palms of Madagascar are
described in English. 175 species are treated - including 70 species previously
unknown to science and described for the first time. Royal Botanic Gardens,
- Alterman, L., G.A. Dyle, and M. Kay Izard. 1995. Creatures of the
Dark, the Nocturnal Prosimians. This is a collection of 36 papers arising
out of a conference held at Duke University in June 1993. (Plenum Press, New
- Harcourt, C. and J. Thornback. 1994?Lemurs of Madagascar and the
Comoros. : The IUCN Red Data Book, compiled by C. Harcourt, IUCN, Gland,
Switzerland and Cambridge, U.K.
- Kappeler, P. M. and J. Ganzhorn, (eds.). 1993. Lemur Social
Systems and Their Ecological Basis. Plenum Press, New York
- Porton, I. E. (ed). 1993. Prosimian Taxon Advisory Group Regional
Collection Plan for Lemurs. AAZPA.
- Mittermeier, R.A., W.R. Konstant, M.E. Nicoll and O. Langrand. 1992.
Lemurs of Madagascar: An Action Plan for their Conservation. 1993-1999.
IUCN/SSC Primate Specialist Group, Gland, Switzerland.
- Tattersall, Ian. 1982. Primates of Madagascar. (Columbia Univ.
- Charles-Dominique, P, et al. 1980. Nocturnal Malagasy
primates, ecology, physiology, and behavior. Academic Press. (A collection
of 10 studies of nocturnal lemurs.)
- Martin, R.D., Doyle, G.A., and Walker, A.C. (eds). 1976 Prosimian
Behaviour (Gerald Duckworth & Co Ltd. , UK). A collection of about 60
scientific studies of lemurs and other prosimians.
- Lowry, P. P., II, G. E. Schatz and P. B. Phillipson (in press).
of natural and anthropogenic vegetation in Madagascar In: B. D.
Patterson and S. M. Goodman (eds.), Natural and human-induced change in
Madagascar. Smithsonian Institute Press). (entire article on-line with
- Wright, P.C. 1995. Demography and life history of free-ranging
Propithecus diadema edwardsi in Ranomafana National Park, Madagascar.
International Journal of Primatology 16(5):835-854.
- Tattersall, Ian. 1993. Madagascar's Lemurs. Scientific
- MacPhee, R.D.E. 1986. Environment, extinction, and Holocene
vertebrate localities in southern Madagascar. in National Geographic
Research Vol. 2, No. 4, pages 441-455 (Autumn).
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