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Maryland Zoo Mourn Coquerel's Sifaka Anastasia, Aged 17

Posted By : The Animal Facts Editorial Team

Date: August 18, 2021 3:55 am

https://www.theanimalfacts.com/belfast-zoo-keeper-adopts-baby-francois-langur/

Anastasia the coquerel's sifaka is pictured prior to her passing at the Maryland Zoo

Photo Credit: The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore

The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore have announced the sad news that their 17 year old Coquerel's sifaka Anastasia passed away on August 12th 2021.

Her keeper Erin Grimm said, "Her death is quite a loss for all of us.”

Anastasia was dominant by nature as Grimm explained, ”Female sifaka tend to play dominant roles in their troop and Ana was no exception. Ana ruled the roost, so to speak. She was usually first to eat, selecting her favorite foods and was adept at breaking up family squabbles. She was also gentle, yet fiercely protective of her offspring."

https://www.theanimalfacts.com/belfast-zoo-keeper-adopts-baby-francois-langur/

Anastasia the coquerel's sifaka is pictured prior to her passing at the Maryland Zoo

Photo Credit: The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore

Anastasia or Ana as she was known was undergoing treatments for a suspected kidney disease and endocrine gland issue.

“As we managed her symptoms, we were searching for a decisive diagnosis,” stated Dr. Ellen Bronson, senior director of animal health, conservation, and research at the Zoo. “Ultimately we concluded that she had a rare disease that has not been reported before in this species, commonly referred to as Addison’s disease. In this disease, the adrenal gland no longer properly excretes hormones, such as adrenaline and cortisol, that are essential to many body functions. She initially responded well to replacement therapy and supportive care, however at her advanced age she was not able to fully recover.”

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Anastasia had lived at the Maryland Zoo since 2009. She came to the zoo to meet Gratian and the pair hit it off producing five young as part of the Sifaka Species Survival Plan (SSP) coordinated by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). These young have all moved to other zoos.

"Sifaka are an endangered species and we are honored to participate in this important program helping to conserve these amazing animals," said Grimm.

Only 13 accredited zoos in the United States provide a home to a group of coquerel's sifaka.

 “We currently have a male sifaka in Chimpanzee Forest; however he will be moving to another accredited zoo soon to be part of a breeding pair. Once he leaves, we will not have sifaka here at the Zoo for the short term. However, we are very committed to this species and will work with the SSP to bring sifaka back to the Zoo,” concluded Grimm.  

Coquerel's Sifaka Anastasia Maryland Zoo

Anastasia the coquerel's sifaka is pictured with one of the five young which she raised prior to her passing at the Maryland Zoo

Photo Credit: The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore

Coquerel's sifaka are best known for their sideways bouncing steps as they move through the forest. They are restricted to the island of Madagascar where they are under threat due to habitat loss which has led to them being listed as endangered.

Learn more about Coquerel's Sifaka here – Coquerel's Sifaka Fact File | The Animal Facts

Learn more about the Maryland Zoo on their website – Maryland Zoo

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