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Sifakas Avahis and Indris: Indriidae

Physical Characteristics

This family (also spelled Indridae) includes the indris (IN-dreez), sifakas (suh-FAH-kuhz), and the avahis (ah-VAH-heez) or woolly lemurs. Head and body length is 10.4 to 20.5 inches (26.4 to 52 centimeters). Weight ranges from 2.2 to 16.1 pounds (1 to 7.3 kilograms). The sifakas and avahis have rather long tails, while the indris have just a stump.

Indriids (members of the Indriidae family) fur color varies. Avahis can be whitish, brownish, or reddish. Indris are black and white. Sifakas are mostly black or dark brown. Fur can be woolly or silky. Contrasting fur colors occur on their backs, eyebrows, top of head, and head ruffs (a fringe of long hairs around the neck). Eye colors include golden brown, orange, and yellow. Indriid eyes are reflective, like mirrors, increasing their ability to see in dim light.

Indriids' hind limbs are longer than forelimbs. There are five fingers on each of two forefeet and five toes on each of two hind feet. All toes have nails except the second digit, or toe. This digit has a grooming (or cleaning) claw. Indriids also have a dental toothcomb, or special front teeth, used for fur cleaning.

Additional topics

Animal Life ResourceMammalsSifakas Avahis and Indris: Indriidae - Physical Characteristics, Behavior And Reproduction, Indriids And People, Milne-edwards's Sifaka (propithecus Edwardsi): Species Accounts - GEOGRAPHIC RANGE, HABITAT, DIET, CONSERVATION STATUS