The Leibniz Institute for the Analysis of Biodiversity Change

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Microcebus berthae survey



Quick facts

Project title: 
Is Madame Berthe’s mouse lemur extinct?
ZFMK Project lead: 


Available evidence from the the Aire Protégée Menabe Antimena (APMA) in central Menabe region of western Madagascar indicates that the already critically endangered Madame Berthe’s mouse lemur (Microcebus berthae) may be one step away from extinction. It’s remaining potential habitat is rapidly shrinking, formerly stable populations have disappeared, and there are no captive populations. While it is impossible to prove that a species has gone extinct while some potential habitat remains, only captures of these small, elusive, nocturnal animals can ultimately reveal whether sustainable populations persist.

The objective of this project is therefore to launch a systematic protected area-wide survey
of the remaining potential habitats of M. berthae to determine the distribution and
abundance of any remaining population nuclei. Only by focusing parallel patrolling activities
on these areas can the smallest primate of the world be saved from extinction within the next
5 years or less. As a bonus, our survey methods will provide additional information on the
status populations of other sympatric nocturnal lemur species (Lepilemur ruficaudatus (CR),
Mirza coquereli (EN), Cheirogaleus medius (LC), Phaner pallescens, and Microcebus murinus


Contact person

Head of section Conservation Ecology at the Center for Biodiversity Monitoring
Research networks, international cooperation & science policy
+49 228 9122-352
+49 228 9122-212 [at]