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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

I'm just chilling, man: Lemur takes a break from foraging to relax and meditate

By Lawrence Conway

The 60s' hippy counter culture message 'turn on, tune in, drop out' seems to have finally reached the lemur community.

Sociable lemurs usually spent their time scurrying around, both during the night and day, in packs of 15 hunting for insects and keeping an eye for predators.

Drop out: This lemur takes time out from monkeying around to meditate and relax

But this monkey seems to have taken on the counterculture phrase first popularised by hippy guru Timothy Leary in 1967.

The animal was photographed on a woodland path, sat upright on its rear with legs crossed and palms facing upwards in a traditional meditation pose.

The startling images were captured by Belgian born amateur photographer Sebastian Degardin, 32, who now lives in Finchley, north London.

Unusual: While the other lemurs carry on with their daily activities their meditating friend seems oblivious

Mr Degardin, a software developer, spotted the unusual lemur while on holiday at a nature park in Mons, Belgium.

He was able to capture the bizarre scene of the monkey was carrying out its private search for enlightenment on film.

The spaced out money, which originates from the far flung African island Madagascar, was unconcerned by Mr Degardin taking his picture.

He said: 'I was gobsmacked when I saw this lemur meditating. I'd only gone to the nature reserve as part of my holiday.

Chill: The meditating lemur's eye lids seem to droop as it assumes a relaxed pose and meditates

'But when I spotted the lemur pulling this pose, I knew I had to capture the image.

Thankfully I had my camera on me, otherwise the world would never have seen this animals funny human like behavior.'

'He was sat on top of this big wooden house that all the lemurs sleep in. It looked like he was the leader of the lemur pack.

'No matter how close I got he didn’t stop. He didn’t even look up as I moved in for a close up - he was so spaced out.

Spaced: The lemur seemed happy to continue relaxing while the rest of the pack scurried around

'After a while some other lemurs came along and began sniffing around. They were probably just as perplexed as we were.

'I stayed around for a while to monitor this particular ones behavior and got some great shots. But after a while they all turned on me and began jumping all over me.'

Lost: The little crossed leg lemur seemed lost in its own thoughts while life carried on around it



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