Familia Daubentoniidae

Gray, 1863

General characteristics

The family Daubentoniidae represent a monotypic family containing only the species Daubentonia madagascariensis, also called the Aye-aye (and the sub-fossil Daubentonia robusta ).
The dental formula is 1/1, 0 or 1/0, 1/0, 3/3 and unique among the lemurs. The upper canines are usually absent. The incisors are large, curving and ever-growing. The family is highly autapomorphic in its dentition (see for more details Schwartz and Tattersall, 1985).
The rostrum is short and the braincase is spheroid. The forelimbs are shorter than the hind limbs. The feet are pentadactyl. The digits are not webbed. The third manual digit is very long and slender and is provided with a sharp claw. The Aye-aye has a bushy, long tail. The baculum is present.
It is a nocturnal animal, in general solitarily living. In the daytime it stays in a nest of leaves and branches, which is usually high up in a large tree. The animal is found in what is left of the coastal forests in the East and Northwest of Madagascar.