Newborns form an unlikely bond at Tropical Butterfly House

The Emperor Tamarin help to look after the baby marmosets

Staff at the Tropical Butterfly House have been watching in amazement as the parents of two newborn Pygmy Marmosets get some unexpected help – from two male Emperor Tamarins!

The Tropical Butterfly House, near Worksop, welcomed its two new arrivals at the start of this year and since then a strong bond has grown between the Pygmy Marmoset family and the Emperor Tamarins who all share an enclosure. The Emperor Tamarins have even been spotted with one or both of the tiny babies snuggled into the fur on their backs and necks.

The twin Pygmy Marmosets with their mum.

The twin Pygmy Marmosets with their mum.

Pygmy Marmosets Blaize and Gizmo were first introduced to each another in late 2012 and it was love at first sight. The pair had their first baby, Pickle in January 2013 before the twins were born a year later.

Curator and zoo manager Andrew Reeve says: “It is not uncommon for other species to hold newborns within a mixed primate enclosure; what’s unusual is the co-operation we’ve observed within our group. Adopted parents sometimes refuse to give the young back to mum, however our Tamarins have been very good and have allowed mum to have the young back to feed them. We will continue to monitor the group closely and are really pleased with the twins’ growth so far.”

The Pygmy Marmoset is the smallest species of monkey in the world, reaching up to 16cm long, including the tail, and babies weigh between 10 and 15 grams at birth. They live in Rain Forests of western Brazil, as well as parts of Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia and Columbia.Visitors to the Tropical Butterfly House can watch these wonderful primates in their enclosure in the Small Animal House and take a sneak peak at the new arrivals.

Can you spot the baby Pygmy Marmosets snuggling up to their adopted parents?

Can you spot the baby Pygmy Marmosets snuggling up to their adopted parents?

The Butterfly House also recently announced via its Facebook page that the Swainson’s (Rainbow) Lorikeets (a type of parrot) have successfully hatched another baby. This species, native to Australia, is very colourful and inquisitive and is sure to be popular with visitors. At four weeks old, the chick is still tucked up safe inside the nest box with its parents and is expected to begin exploring its tropical surroundings within the next month.

The Tropical Butterfly House, Wildlife and Falconry Centre is located just five minutes from the Junction 31 of the M1 and is open daily. For details visit the website.

Posted on 10 January 2014
Featured author: Catherine Allen Marketing Assistant

Arts fan, runner and cyclist who has been living in Nottingham for more than a decade. Loves real ale, craft beer, good food, travelling and sausage dogs.

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