Friday Know Your Primate: Golden-headed Lion Tamarin

Order: Primates
Family: Callitrichidae
Genus: Leontopithecus
Species: Leontopithecus chrysomelas
Common Name: Golden-headed Lion Tamarin

In general, tamarins are small, long trunked and long tailed primates. They tend to feed on exudates. The Golden-headed lion tamarin resides only in Brazilian rainforests at heights of 3-10 meters. Like most tamarin species there is little sexual dimorphism and they mate for life. Fleagle points out that smaller species of platyrrhines usually give birth to larger infants. Which creates problems in the birthing process and in early postnatal care. The Golden-headed lion tamarin – and callitrichids in general – have overcome this by giving birth to twins. They live in family groups of 2-8 individuals. Not much else is known about them.
Here are some more pictures:
And as – almost – always here is a picture of the skull (I couldn’t find one of the entire skeleton):

2 Responses

  1. paltyrrhines => platyrrhines

  2. Met one some years ago at the San Diego Wild Animal Park. They are dinky little things. I was headed out to catch the tour bus back to the zoo’s main campus, and he was seated on a bench inside this sort of walk through cage. I expect his thoughts were something along the line of, “Fuck, that’s big.” 🙂

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