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Beza-Mahafaly Special Reserve *

The Beza-Mahafaly Special Reserve, like the Berenty Private Reserve, is made up of small patches of gallery forest (100 ha) and spiny forest (480 ha), and has been a key research site for the last quarter century. It is south of the Onilahy River about 35 km northeast of the village of Betioky-Sud, which itself is about five hours drive on RN10 from Toliara (= Tuléar). Both the RN10 and the dirt track to Beza-Mahafaly are in poor condition and require four-wheel-drive vehicles. Visitors should count on spending a day getting in and another day getting out. There are no hotels next to the reserve, but camping in the vicinity is possible. Lemurs that can be seen in Beza-Mahafaly are the same as those in Berenty, including the ring-tailed lemur (Lemur catta), Verreaux’s sifaka (Propithecus verreauxi), the fat-tailed dwarf lemur (Cheirogaleus medius), the gray-brown mouse lemur (Microcebus griseorufus), and the gray mouse lemur (Microcebus murinus). Although the habitat in Beza-Mahafaly is similar to that of Berenty, Beza-Mahafaly is the only known site where one is sure to see the recently-described Petter’s sportive lemur (Lepilemur petteri). What is more, the region as a whole is much more remote and worth the adventure of getting there.