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Golden lion tamarin

Leontopithecus rosalia

Golden lion tamarins are a species of New World monkey, which are monkeys found in Central and South America. These charismatic primates get their name from their fine mane of golden hair.

These monkeys can measure up to 30 centimetres (cm) and their tails can reach up to 40cm. They can weigh up to 790 grams.

These stunning primates are very nearly extinct and are facing increasing threats. They have lost all but two to five percent of their original Brazilian habitat, made up of forest fragments which are too small to sustain a viable population. Action has been taken to protect and preserve the species, including a special programme which re-introduces captive bred animals back into the wild. Golden lion tamarins born at Belfast Zoo have previously been released back to the wild.

IUCN Status

The IUCN status of the golden lion tamarin is endangered.

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Animal class


Conservation status

Golden lion tamarins are listed under Appendix I of CITES. The IUCN are fearful that they will soon become extinct in the wild.




Experts have estimated that there are around 1,000 golden lion tamarins left in the wild.


Omnivore. Tamarins eat fruits, nectar, flowers, gums and small animals.