They have human-like hands with an opposable thumb
Slow lorises are primates native to South and Southeast Asia. There are five species of slow loris but the Sunda slow loris (Nycticebus coucang) and the pygmy slow loris (Nycticebus pygmaeus) are the ones most often found in Cambodia. The slow loris has a round head with short ears and large, forward-facing eyes, which reflect light, giving off a brilliant orange-red “eyeshine” at night. These shy nocturnal animals live in trees, and are the only existing venomous primate. They produce a toxin in glands located on their elbows, which when mixed with their saliva, produces a toxic bite. Omnivorous creatures, slow lorises feed on fruit, tree gum, insects, eggs, lizards, birds, and even small mammals. While they may look slow, they are actually capable of short bursts of speed, often springing forward to catch insects with both hands.
The primate, whose big eyes and timid demeanor has garnered it internet fame and media attention, is now threatened with extinction as they become increasingly popular as pets. Listed by the IUCN Red List as Vulnerable, their populations are expected to decline another 30% in the next 22 years. When captured by poachers and traders, they are often stuffed in crowded cages and exposed to hours of daylight; their teeth are painfully clipped off using nail cutters, a procedure that more than 90% of the time leads to infection and death. Used as medicine, their bodies are then spread into a crucifiction position and smoked. Wildlife Alliance’s Wildlife Rapid Rescue Team (WRRT) has confiscated and rescued hundreds of these small mammals from markets where they are sold as either pets or traditional medicine.
At Phnom Tamao Wildlife Rescue Center (PTWRC), Wildlife Alliance cares for 16 slow lorises, all of which were rescued from the illegal wildlife trade. $2,000 will provide these sensitive primates with a year’s supply of food, fresh water and medical treatment.Your gift will ensure they receive the proper care they need to not only recover, but thrive so that one day they may be fit for release. Help us raise $2,000 to protect Earth’s only venomous primate. Donate this Bonus Day and make your gift go even further!