VIP Visitors from Madagascar! At the Montréal Biodôme from June 21 to November 16, 2008



    MONTREAL, June 16 /CNW Telbec/ - Over the next few months, from June 21
to November 16, the Montréal Biodôme will be presenting a habitat typical of
the island of Madagascar. Visitors will be able to admire geckos, frogs, fish
and especially lemur catta, primates like those in the popular children's TV
series Zoboomafoo.
    The habitat will start with a carved wooden house typical of those in
Madagascar. But as soon as visitors step through the door, they'll be plunged
into a whole new world - a semi-arid habitat from southwest Madagascar opens
up before them. Only a low wall will separate visitors from plants typical of
the region and lemurs, primates known for their long striped tails and found
only in Madagascar.
    There will also be various references to the local cultural heritage,
along with vivariums and an aquarium for a close-up view of animals typical of
the region. Since 2008 is the Year of the Frog, these creatures will of course
be in the spotlight. And visitors can also examine a little baobab,
Madagascar's national tree.
    Throughout the exhibition, interpretation panels will provide interesting
details on these plants and animals found nowhere else in the world. A nature
interpreter will be on hand on the path to answer visitors' questions.
    Art and popular traditions in Madagascar are revealed through the lenses
of two photographers, Julien Passerini and Marcel Muller, and by items from
the Ecole Malgache de Montréal.

    About Madagascar

    Madagascar has unique flora and fauna, and is one of the countries with
the greatest biodiversity. In fact, more than 80% of the plants and animals
identified in Madagascar are found nowhere else. This natural wealth is
threatened by habitat destruction, however, to the point that a number of
species are at risk of disappearing forever, before they have even been
discovered.
    Creating a habitat representing an ecosystem typical of the island of
Madagascar is an excellent way to introduce Biodôme visitors to biodiversity
and its importance for our planet's health.

    A temporary habitat

    In 2008, visitors will be able to immerse themselves in nature,
Madagascar-style. The Biodôme created a first temporary habitat back in 2005,
a mini-ecosystem devoted to giant bats from Asia. The excellent response from
the public encouraged the Biodôme to set up a dryland habitat featuring
prairie dogs, roadrunners and burrowing owls in 2006 and 2007.
    It's an opportunity you won't want to miss!




For further information:

For further information: Media information: Nadine Fortin,
Communications Co-ordinator, (514) 868-3053,
nadine.fortin@ville.montreal.qc.ca; Evelyne Girard, Communications Assistant,
(514) 868-3123, evelynegirard@ville.montreal.qc.ca; Visual available on
request.

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Ville de Montréal - Biodôme de Montréal

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