J for Javan Slow Loris
Slow lorises are beautiful, huge-eyed creatures that live in Indonesian forests in Java. Less than a foot long, they don’t jump through the trees like lemurs or monkeys, but climb slowly using lianas and vines to get from tree to tree. They eat fruit, eggs, lizards, tree gum and chocolate seeds, are seen alone or in pairs, but at night sometimes sleep in groups.
They are very vulnerable because of their slow habit – and the fact that instead of sleeping hidden in a hole, they sleep out in the open on branches in the daytime (they are nocturnal). Despite being protected, the laws are not well enforced and they are collected for pets and to be turned into traditional medicines.
They are kept in terrible conditions on top of one another in tiny cages, not given the correct foods, and many die.
They are classified by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species as Endangered due to the reasons above and also loss of habitat.
Javan Slow Loris
Slow Loris love forests
and roam cultivations
of bamboos and mangroves
and chocolate plantations,
eat seeds, fruit and tree gum
as so slowly they climb
through flowing braid ropes
of liana and vine,
if only they knew
as they trustingly creep
they must find a safe place
in the daytime to sleep.
All material, illustration and poem © Liz Brownlee
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More information about the slow loris here: Wikipedia.
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