Rolling Hills Welcomes New Twin Babies
Vickee Spicer - Fri 08:31 AM 06/22/2012
On Monday, June 18th, Rolling Hills Wildlife Adventure welcomed not one, but two new baby cotton-top tamarins. The sex of the twin new world monkeys has not yet been determined. They are the first babies born to Lilly, a three-year-old female and Eddy, who is seven. Both babies appear to be thriving, as they hang on tightly – alternating between parents. Both baby tamarins can be seen in the tamarin exhibit located inside the rhino barn at Rolling Hills Zoo.
“We had been watching Lilly closely, as her belly swelled (quite large) and we could see movement inside”, says Peter Burvenich, Curator at Rolling Hills. “We suspected, due to the size of her belly that she may be carrying twins, so we were delighted that she had two healthy babies”.
The cotton-top tamarin is a small New World monkey weighing less than 1 lb that is found in the wild in tropical forest edges and secondary forests of northwest Colombia in South America, where it is arboreal and diurnal.
This tamarin species has a long sagittal crest - white hairs from forehead to nape flowing over the shoulders, giving it the name "Cotton-top". The skin of the face is black, with gray or white bands above the eyes that continue along the edge of the face down to the jaw and has no facial hair. Its lower canine teeth are longer than its incisors, giving the appearance of small tusks. About the size of a squirrel, males are only slightly larger than females.
Cotton-top tamarins are critically endangered, having lost more than three-quarters of their original habitat to deforestation. Though numerous in captivity, only 2,000 to 3,000 individuals exist in the wild. The species is considered to be one of "The World's 25 Most Endangered Primates."