Andrianarivo (1981) and Kappeler (1997) have recorded
high population densities for M. zaza. Indeed, their estimates of 385 individuals/km2 and 1,086 individuals/km2 are several times higher than those obtained for M. coquereli in the Kirindy Forest. The concentration of animals in more isolated forest fragments and the presence of mango, cashew, and other introduced food tree species in the Ambato region may help explain the higher densities (Markolf et al., 2008a).
This species is typically solitary, choosing to forage alone. It spends daytime hours in a spherical nest of up to 50 cm in diameter, usually placed 2–10 m high in the fork of a
large branch or among dense lianas (to discourage predators), and constructed of interlaced lianas, branches, leaves, and twigs chewed off nearby trees. It would seem that they are more social nesters than M. coquereli. Kappeler (2003) found nests in Ambanja with adult males, females and young, and an average occupancy of four individuals (Kappeler et al., 2005). Markolf et al. (2008a) also found that they showed more social tendencies than is typical of M. coquereli (perhaps associated with higher recorded densities) and were also more vocal.
Mirza zaza is omnivorous, feeding on fruits, flowers, buds, gums, insects, insect secretions, spiders, frogs, chameleons, and small birds. Cashew fruits are an important food source during the dry season (June–July).
Reproductive activity in M. zaza, based on studies of animals from the Ambanja region (Kappeler et al., 2005), begins in August, several months earlier than when M. coquereli begins to mate in the Kirindy Forest of southwestern Madagascar (Pagès, 1978, 1980; Kappeler, 2003).