The Subspecies of Loris Tardigradus and Their Conservation Status: A Review

  • Helga Schulze
  • Bernhard Meier


This paper constitutes a review of the subspecies classification of Loris tardigradus, their distribution, and conservation status in the field and in captivity. Present descriptions of the subspecies of the slender loris are largely based on small samples and are distinguished by minor variations in size and pelage color (Osman Hill, 1933, 1953; Jenkins, 1987). Obviously, in some cases the inaccessibility of type specimen localities has played a major role. Furthermore, according to Osman Hill and Phillip s(1932), and after 13 years experience of breeding this species in captivity, there are large individual and age-related variations in coat color and body size, which therefore are not sufficient for distinguishing races or species. Some Loris subspecies might turn out to be identical (Jenkins, 1987) or to be representatives of a clinal variation. L. t. tardigradus (Sri Lanka) and L. t. malabaricus (India), for instance, are both small, brown and restricted to western rainforests, whereas two larger grey subspecies, L. t. nordicus (Sri Lanka) and L. t. lydekkerianus (India), are found in dry-zone shrub jungle. During the last glacial period, when India and Sri Lanka were connected, they probably belonged to only one brown and one grey form. Forms intermediate between some subspecies have been found (Osman Hill, 1933). Type and specimen locations are shown in Figs. 1 and 2. Additional data are presented in the Specimen List below.


Museum Specimen Primate Specialist Group Pelage Color North Central Province Specimen Locality 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Helga Schulze
    • 1
  • Bernhard Meier
    • 1
  1. 1.Institut für Anatomie, Abteilung. Funktionelle MorphologieRuhr-Universität BochumBochumGermany

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