Jonas Wahlström is forced to get rid of his lemurs

Jonas Wahlstrom is forced to get rid of his lemurs

Updated 23.06 | Published 22.08



For 20 years, Jonas Wahlström’s lemurs lived on the farm in Lisö.

But now the County Administrative Board is putting a stop to it – and demands that they be gone within two months.

– It is so strange, he says.

The County Administrative Board has issued an injunction against Skansenprofilen Jonas Wahlström and announced that the ring-tailed lemurs that live on the farm at Lisö outside Nynäshamn must be gone within two months.

The reason is that the animals are not shown publicly, as in a zoo, and that there is not enough breeding on the farm either, according to the county administrative board.

Jonas Wahlström disagrees.

– I am so surprised by this development. For more than 20 years I have had lemurs at my place down on Södertörn. It has been inspected by the Swedish Agricultural Agency, the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency and the County Administrative Board several times without any remarks whatsoever, he says and continues:

– That all animals must be shown, that is completely out of thin air. The Swedish Agricultural Agency does not have that requirement. The other thing they run with, that the breeding family is not doing very well. So, the authorities cannot get involved in whether a breeding activity is more or less successful.

“They’re scared shitless”

Wahlström believes that the county board’s new bid depends on a review that Dagens Nyheter did last year.

– They (the county administrative board) are scared shitless of Dagens Nyheter. DN wrote that the county administrative board saw through the fingers of the lemurs that lived at Sjöhagen since 20 years ago, and that caused the county administrative board to react, he says.


full screen Wahlström with a lemur at Skansen. Photo: Carolina Byrmo

In its decision, the county administrative board also notes that there is a lack of fencing and game protection for the lemurs at the facility on Lisö. Something that Jonas Wahström opposes:

– It claims that it must be escape-proof, and it is not, because my lemurs run free on 150,000 square meters. and they stay within roughly 30,000 square feet. They have been doing that for 20 years. So they don’t fit, he says and continues:

– And then it must be predator-proof according to the laws. But on Lisö, we haven’t had a single predator attack, which my animal keepers can attest to.


full screen Jonas Wahlström with his lemurs on the farm at Lisö. Photo: Calle Törnström

Can be shipped to South Africa

But don’t you have to adhere to those rules even if nothing has happened in these 20 years?

– Yes, but they allow other zoos to have animals that are not dangerous completely loose. It’s not just me who had permission to have them loose for 20 years.

Jonas Wahlström says that he does not have the opportunity to move the lemurs from the farm right now because a couple of them are pregnant. But in due time he believes the whole family will be shipped to South Africa.

– I am actually 70 years old today and also have my limitations. I realize that I will not be able to keep this property down on Lisö for all the years.


full screenJonas Wahlström. Photo: Peter Wixtröm