Order : PRIMATES
Family : Lorisidae
Species : Nycticebus coucang
Head-body length : 26-30 cm
Tail length : 1.5-2.5 cm
Weight : up to 2 kg
The Sunda Slow Loris is a small
primate inhabiting primary and secondary forests, as well as orchards,
plantations and bamboo groves. It is slow moving, arboreal and solitary in
habits. Mainly nocturnal, it rests by day in the forks of trees, or in thick
Formerly slow lorises were lumped together in a single species, but in
recent years studies have revealed between five and eight species, all of
which occur in Southeast Asia. The Sunda Slow Loris retains the original
species name of Nycticebus coucang.
The thick, short fur of this species varies in colour from grey-brown to reddish-brown, and
a darker stripe extends from the top of the head down the spine, sometimes
to the base of the tail. On top of the head this dark stripe divides into
four somewhat less dark stripes that extend to the ears and eyes.
There are dark rings around the eyes, and a thick
white stripe between. The tail is short, measuring just 1 or 2 cm. It feeds
primarily on large insects and molluscs, but will also take vertebrates such
as lizards or fledglings from birds nests. Fruits also contribute to its
diet, and it appears to have a fondness for the sap of certain tree species.
A single young is born
(occasionally twins) after a gestation period of over
six months : the young remain with the mother for up to nine months. Males
Sunda Slow Loris occurs in Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, Singapore and
Sumatra. In Singapore the population appears to be a mix of native animals,
and introduced individuals of other races or species, possibly once kept as
Fig 1 : Specimen from Fraser's Hill, Pahang, Peninsular Malaysia exploring
the leaves and flowers of Piper aduncum.
Fig 2 : A lone Sunda Slow Loris in Panti Forest,
Johor, Peninsular Malaysia.
Fig 3 : Licking the sap of the Bat
Prunus polystachyus, after having peeled away some of the bark.
Fig 4 : The Sunda Slow Loris is an adept climber.
References : M1, M2, M3, M8