Most species in this family are ground-dwellers, mostly in arid regions. The folds in the palms and soles help grip the loose, sandy ground they live on, and in the case of the tree-dwelling species, helps them get a good grip on the tree trunks they prefer, which is so smooth, it's almost glass-like and slippery in the moist climate. The most arboreal species in this family are Pholidobata and Lepidopus, who live among specific varieties of eucalyptus trees with these extremely smooth trunks, feed on the toxic leaves, and sleep curled up in the highest branches. These lemurs are not active leapers, but spend nearly 100% of their time in the trees, almost never coming to the ground levels. These species are almost strict vegetarians, only occasionally feeding on insects and grubs.
Different species have varying levels of omnivory. Parapithecia is the most carnivorous species. Though meat only makes up less than 50% of this animal's diet. The large claws on their feet are as long as 6 inches, sharp and curved, and used to disembowel prey. The hind feet are elongate, much longer than in any other species in this family, and aid this animal in leaping up to 5 times their own body length. Occasionally, these huge lemurs will hunt such prey as antelope and therapeds. Though they scavenge kills by other animals just about as often as they hunt, and they feed on leaves, fruits and grasses more often than they consume meat.
The most varied genus is Decarus, most of which are ground-dwellers, but a few of these species also inhabit the trees, though they prefer to live at much lower levels than Pholidobata and Lepidopus. They are also much active leapers, with a much more varied diet. Most of the ground-dwellers in this genus prefer arid and savanna lands. Though D. epaulettus, D. picta and D. alienus prefer the wetter rainforest climates. D. epaulettus also lives in the highest elevations among members of this family. The ruffles on the animal's upper back help keep them warmer in the cool mountain climates.
Like the majority of lemurs, these animals are social creatures, living in small family groups, usually consisting of a dominant male, a few females, a subordinate male and young. Communication consists of calls. Pholidobata has the loudest calls, resembling those of a child crying. Each individual call lasts as long as a minute, and are generally given by the males. Parapithecia and it's close relatives are almost strictly ground-dwelling, only occasionally retreating to the trees when danger threatens. They communicate with other families with loud, whooping calls that carry all across several miles of savanna. Breeding for these animals occurs only once a year, and usually a single cub is born to each female, though all females in the family unit may be bred at the same time.
Predators of these lemurs are quite a few. Various carnivores like foxes, mongooses and vulpemustelids may take these lemurs if they can capture them. Large, predatory bats may also take the tree-dwelling species. Deinognathids are also major predators of these lemurs. Spathodon is the greatest enemy of Parapithecia and it's closest relatives. In defense, these animals will run, kicking back with their sharp claws, most of the time, they will seek refuge up a tree, or in burrows or bushes. To view this family, follow this link.