max temp: 13°C

min temp: 12°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Colchester: Red-ruffed lemur contained by police after escaping from Colchester Zoo

14:18 06 May 2014

Lemur at Colchester Zoo

Lemur at Colchester Zoo


A lemur was spotted hopping about the street in Colchester on Sunday evening.


The red-ruffed species, native to Madagascar, had escaped from Colchester Zoo and was spotted on the loose in Maldon Road, Stanway.

Two officers from Essex Police were called to the scene amid reports of a “monkey” at the side of the road. Police closed a section of the road while they contained the lemur and waited for zookeepers to come and pick it up again.

Staff from Colchester Zoo arrived about 20 minutes later and collected the animal.

Yesterday the zoo refused to comment on how the animal had broken free. Last November, five timber wolves escaped from Colchester Zoo through a damaged fence, three of which had to be shot dead.

When the red-ruffed lemur was found it was reported to be in the front garden of a house about half a mile from the zoo.

Police offered bananas to the wayward animal in order to lure towards them.

One onlooker was reported as saying, “The lemur was just hopping round the front garden, oblivious to all the interest and police activity.

“He certainly did not seem to be stressed and was enjoying his big adventure.

“He had been walking along the pavement next to the road and we joked that he looked like he was going to catch a bus into town.

“The keeper was certainly delighted when she had him safely in her arms - I think the banana must have done the trick.”

A spokesman for Essex Police added: “We were contacted by a motorist shortly before 8.30pm who reported that a monkey was on Maldon Road outside the zoo.

“Officers attended the scene and contained the lemur before zoo staff arrived and collected the animal 20 minutes later.

“A section of the road was closed during this time to keep the lemur safe.”

Red-ruffed lemurs are native to the rainforests on the island of Madagascar off the east coast of Africa. They live in small groups and are well-known for their distinctive raucous call.



  • Never mind the picture, how about the fact that a lemur is not a monkey.

    Report this comment

    Ted Maul

    Tuesday, May 6, 2014

  • Lazy Journalism, the picture is a ring tailed lemur not a red ruffed lemur. It would have taken a couple of minutes to google a red ruffed but you probaly used a file picture you had of any old lemur hoping nobody would notice. Well so far 2 people have so get it right Ipswich star. How many other articles are factually incorrect I wonder.

    Report this comment


    Tuesday, May 6, 2014

  • If it was a red-ruffed lemur then your picture is wrong.

    Report this comment

    On Two Wheels

    Tuesday, May 6, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

John McKno

A 70-year-old former maths teacher had denied 13 charges alleging he abused five children at Kesgrave Hall and two other schools.

Jack preparing his bake as part of Framlingham's Hitcham's Head Chefs competition.

Treacle tart with custard, black forest cupcakes, oaty chocolate chip cookies and apple crumble are among the dishes that impressed judges at a primary school cooking competition last week.

Colchester High Street bus lane

Motorists in Essex have paid more than £2million in fines for using four bus lanes in the county.

Sudbury silk will now be given special European protection from imitation thanks to laws championed this week by local Suffolk Euro MP Richard Howitt. The Suffolk Euro MP at Vanners Silk Weavers with chairman David Tooth.

It has graced the homes and bodies of celebrities ranging from Michelle Obama to members of the Royal family, but up until now ‘Sudbury silk’ has remained a relatively well-kept secret.

Ipswich Crown Court.

An Ipswich woman whose sex assault allegations led to the discovery a convicted paedophile deported 11 years ago was back in the UK and working with vulnerable teenagers has broken her silence.

The entrance to PPG Industries in Stowmarket. (File image from 2012)

Two males believed to be from Afghanistan have been arrested on immigration offences in Stowmarket this morning.

Airman 1st Class Darren Phillips, 48th Equipment Maintenance Squadron crew chief at RAF Lakenheath, who died in a motorcycle accident

A memorial service for a 20-year-old US Air Force airman who died after a crash near Barton Mills is being held.

The crash happened late at night

Motorists were delayed on the A120 near Great Bromley after a three-vehicle crash on Friday night.

Police attended the accident

A female cyclist was in hospital on Friday after a collision in Colchester.

A car on Brackenwood Crescent has rolled into a house  causing minor damage.

A bearded dragon narrowly escaped unharmed, if a little bit shaken, after a car slammed into the front of a house in Bury St Edmunds earlier today.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages