Saturday, April 20, 2013

Southern Lesser Bush baby

Last night we were invited to dinner with Dick and Rina, newbies who've arrived recently in Mwadui. They're South Africans, they're sixty-something and they've just joined the : "we love cats club!"(Two weeks ago during a tropical rainstorm, Dick found two half-drowned kittens on the side of the road. Ambrose - our youngest cat - posted about these kitties last Sunday) 
 Topsy who fell with its paws in the butter and now belongs to Dick and Rina
Tipsy the sibling, already very much at home with its new mom and dad

While we chatted, Dick told me to keep my camera ready and an eye on the tree stump just outside the open front door. There's a hole in which a pair of bush babies live.   Suddenly Dick, Rina and Grant were calling out for me to focus; the bush baby had appeared. No matter how hard I looked I couldn't see it. Then Rina stood behind me and told me to follow her finger pointing straight at it. I was so surprised to see this tiny little face with huge eyes and ears looking out of the nest holes and  down at four excited humans. 
My first photo of the bush baby - facing away from the camera

Then a careful one-eyed peep

A bolder look
Southern Lesser Bush baby

A bush baby has a cry like a human baby, hence the name. It measures head and body at 14-17cm and the tail 11-28cm. The Southern Lesser Bush baby has greyish brown fur with large ears and large orange eyes. They have a dark eye mask, tail and yellowish legs. 

Southern Lesser Bush babies inhabit a band across Southern Africa, including Angola, Zambia and Western Tanzania. They inhabit semi-arid Acacia woodlands,  savanna and forest edges. Here in Mwadui, they live in gardens with no dogs. 

Bush babies are nocturnal and arboreal. (live in trees) They live in groups of between one and five animals but forage alone at night. They eat butterflies, moths and beetles. They sleep in tree hollows during the day.

The gestation period is 121-124 days. After the first pregnancy, the female gives birth to a single baby and then has twins after the following pregnancies. The babies are carried by the scruff of the neck in its mother's mouth for the first 50 days of its life.

Off to forage for the night, it turns around in a last pose for the camera

I hope you're all having a wonderful weekend.
Southern lesser bush baby, South African


  1. Such cute little buggers they are!! I love your pics, Jo! Thanks for sharing!! Enjoy your weekend!!

  2. HI Jo, I love kitties ---but tonight, I really love seeing the adorable Bush babies... How precious!!! Thanks for sharing.

  3. How wonderful you have some new friends from SA, and how wonderful that the new kitties are doing well. I've never seen a bush baby before and it was great and exciting for you I'm sure to capture these photos. Have a wonderful weekend dear Jo. {hugs}

  4. The Bush Baby is adorable. Saw one in Kruger on my first visit but too dark for photos. Glad the kitties found a home, and not at your house. ;)

  5. Such lovely little squirts, much like some of our smaller possums. Lucky you to a) see it and b) have it come out and pose for you.

    PS thank you for the weekend wishes, I am having a lovely one.

  6. The bushbaby is so cute with those huge nocturnal eyes. Great captures.

  7. Ahh! Jo, One of the things I miss about Africa is the abundant and varied wildlife. I know the joy you must be feeling to have new friends come up from S.A. also. We have friends here whom we met in Kenya 24 years ago and they are like family now. They live about 5 hours south of us and we get together a couple of times a year. What wonderful pictures you captured of the bush baby!

  8. Jo, your bushbabies are so cute. I love their eyes. How neat to see these critters in the wild. Great photos. Happy weekend to you!

  9. I am so happy that the two kitties found such a nice home !
    These pictures of the bush babies are amazing !! I have never seen one !

  10. How cool to spot and photograph a little bush baby. I've only seen pictures of them, never one in "person."

  11. Wow, that's amazing — its first pregnancy is just one "baby" so that she can get used to motherhood, with all its charms and chores, then after that she has twins, the better to serve the continuation of the species.
    I like this cute little animal.
    The kittens are cute, too. "Landed with his feet in the butter" is a wonderful expression!
    Luv, K


Thank you for visiting my blog and taking the time to leave a comment. I appreciate your feedback. Jo