Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance logo
San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance Library logo

Coquerel's Sifaka (Propithecus coquereli) Fact Sheet: Diet & Feeding


Primarily folivores (from Mittermeier et al. 2010; Mittermeier et al. 2013)

  • Leaves compose the majority of the diet
    • Also consume flowers, fruit, bark, and dead wood
  • Diverse diet
    • Feed on nearly 100 different plant species

Principal plants consumed (from Richard 1974)

  • Drypetes sp.
  • Cedrelopsis sp.
  • Capurodendron microlobum
  • Commiphora pervilleana
  • Combretum sp.
  • Protorhus deflexa

Incidentally consume insects (Richard 1974)

Seasonally variable diet (from Mittermeier et al. 2010; Richard 1978)

  • Wet season
    • Young leaves, flower, fruit, bark, and dead wood
  • Dry season
    • Mature leaves and buds


Food acquisition (from Richard 1978)

  • Secure most food with teeth
    • Gouge bark and dead wood with toothcomb
    • Molars and premolars tear off pieces
  • Hands bring branches within reach of the mouth
  • Body postures
    • Sit on or cling (vertically) to tree branches; most common feeding posture
    • Hang from branches with various combinations of fore- and hindlimbs
      • Dangle from all four limbs
      • Suspend upside down by the hindfeet
    • Lie, "spread-eagle" over a network of fine twigs

Consume food where found, most often (Richard 1978)

  • Rarely carry food; observed following theft attempt

Uncommonly forage on the ground (Richard 1978)

Feeding Behavior

a sifaka eating fruit

Most foods are consumed where they are found.

Sifaka often sit on or dangle from tree branches while having a meal.

Image credit: © F Vassen from Flickr. Some rights reserved.

Page Citations

Mittermeier et al. (2010)
Mittermeier et al. (2013)
Richard (1974)
Richard (1978)

SDZWA Library Links