Lemur stolen from San Francisco Zoo found near church playground

The animal is difficult to care for, according to zoo officials.

October 16, 2020, 12:50 AM

Authorities in San Francisco have found the ring-tailed lemur named Maki who was stolen from the city's zoo.

The San Francisco Zoo announced that Maki was discovered missing from the Lipman Family Lemur Forest Wednesday morning. On Thursday night, authorities said the animal had been found near a church playground.

"The lemur was successfully captured and positively identified as Maki," San Francisco Police said in a statement Thursday. "Maki was determined to be in good health and transported back to the San Francisco Zoo."

Police said officers arrived at the zoo Wednesday morning and discovered there was a forced entry to the animal enclosure where Maki was housed.

The 21-year-old male lemur was described as "highly endangered" because it required special care.

Almost a third of lemurs are critically endangered, the International Union for Conservation of Nature announced in July. There are only eight remaining known populations around the world that have more than 100 ring-tailed lemurs.

Police spent Wednesday collecting evidence at the zoo, ABC San Francisco station KGO reported.

The zoo announced a $2,100 reward Thursday for information leading to his recovery.

"I just couldn't believe it," Barry Lipman, a former San Francisco Zoo board member, told KGO. "Why would anyone want a lemur?"


Lemurs are not easy to care for, added Lipman, who provides funding for the Lipman Family Lemur Forest.

Maki was last seen in his enclosure Tuesday night, investigators said. It's unclear whether a suspect has been identified.

ABC News' William Mansell and Marilyn Heck contributed to this report.