Babakotia radofilai Godfrey et. al., 1990

Radofila's sloth lemur



Taxonomy & Nomenclature



Conservation Status


Last record: c. 2,400 BC


People had reached Madagascar by 500 BCE (Crowley, 2010), and there is no reason why [i]Babakotia[/i] should have gone extinct in the intervening period from the only known radiocarbon date to first colonization (i.e. c.1900 years). Thus it is assumed that Babakotia survived to at least 500 BC, but how much longer is currently unknown.









Type specimen: UA/LPV-8713


Other material

DUPC 9144
DUPC 9116
DUPC 9921






Original scientific description:

Godfrey, L. R., Simons, E. L., Chatrath, P. J., and Rakotosamimanana, B. (1990). A new fossil lemur (Babakotia, Primates) from northern Madagascar. Comptes rendus de l'Académie des sciences. Série 2, Mécanique, Physique, Chimie, Sciences de l'univers, Sciences de la Terre 310(1): 81-87.


Other references:

Alcover, Josep Antoni et al. (1998). Mammal Species of the World: Additional Data on Insular Mammals. American Museum Novitates 3248, 29 pp., 1 table.

Burney, David A. et al. (1997). Environmental change, extinction and human activity: evidence from caves in NW Madagascar. Journal of Biogeography 24: 755-767.

Burney DA, Burney LP, Godfrey LR, Jungers WL, Goodman SM, Wright HT, and Jull AJT (2004) A chronology for late prehistoric Madagascar. Journal of Human Evolution 47, 25–63.

Burney, David A. et al. (2019). Subfossil lemur discoveries from the Beanka Protected Area in western Madagascar. Quaternary Research. DOI: [Abstract]

Crowley, Brooke E. (2010). A refined chronology of prehistoric Madagascar and the demise of the megafauna. Quaternary Science Reviews 29(19/20): 2591-2603. [Abstract]

Jungers, W.L., Demes, B. & Godfrey, L.R. 2008 How big were the "giant" extinct lemurs of Madagascar? In Elwyn Simons: a search for origins (ed. J.G. Fleagle & C.C. Gilbert), pp. 343-360. New York: Springer.

William L. Jungers, Laurie R. Godfrey, Elwyn L. Simons, Prithujit S. Chatrath and Berthe Rakotosamimanana. (1991). Phylogenetic and functional affinities of Babakotia (Primates), a fossil lemur from northern Madagascar. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 88: 9082-9086.

Elwyn L Simons, Laurie R. Godfrey, William L. Jungers, Prithijit S. Chatrath, Berthe Rakotosamimanana. (1992). A New Giant Subfossil Lemur, Babakotia, and the Evolution of the Sloth Lemurs. Folia Primatologica 58(4): 197-203.

Rafferty, K. L., Teaford, M. F. and Jungers, W. L. (2002). Molar microwear of subfossil lemurs: improving the resolution of dietary inferences. Journal of Human Evolution 43: 645-657.

Simons, E.L.; Burney, D.A.; Chatrath, P.S.; Godfrey, L.R.; Jungers, W.L.; Rakotosamimanana, B. (1995). AMS 14C Dates for Extinct Lemurs from Caves in the Ankarana Massif, Northern Madagascar. Quaternary Research 43 (2): 249-254. [Abstract]

Turvey, Samuel T. (2009). Holocene mammal extinctions, pp. 41-61. In: Turvey, Samuel T. (ed.). Holocene Extinctions. Oxford, UK & New York, USA: Oxford University Press. xii + 352 pp.

Turvey, Samuel T. and Fritz, Susanne A. (2011). The ghosts of mammals past: biological and geographical patterns of global mammalian extinction across the Holocene. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B 366(1577): 2564-2576. [Supplementary Information]


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