Golden-headed lion tamarins Endangered primates with golden, lion-like manes
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Type mammal
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Size 70cm
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Weight 620g
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Diet herbivore

Golden-headed lion tamarins

Leontopithecus chrysomelas
  • Summary

    Golden headed lion tamarins are endangered primates from Brazil. Bristol Zoo is home to a group of golden headed lion tamarins. 

    The tamarins live in family groups, with parents forming a strong pair-bond and staying together for life.

    Unlike most primates the female is usually larger than the male.

  • Dietary

    Golden headed lion tamarins are omnivores, feeding on a diet of fruit, insects and small lizards. They are equipped with sharp claws to help them rummage through the forest floor and grab their insect meals.

  • Habitat

    In the wild, golden headed lion tamarins live in the tropical rainforest of Brazil, South America. The primates live in nests, usually in the bottom of hollow trees. The entrance hole to the nest is too small for most nocturnal predators of the region, so they can sleep safely.

    species range map

  • Conservation

    It is estimated that there are between 6,000 and 14,000 golden-headed lion tamarins left in the wild and they are now classed as Endangered.

    More than 90% of the original Atlantic coastal forest has been lost or fragmented due to agricultural, urban and resort development. In addition, the capture of animals for laboratories and the pet trade has contributed to the decline. Zoos across the world including Bristol Zoo Gardens have coordinated their approach to saving the tamarins from extinction.

    Red List Status Endangered

    Red List Status Endangered

    IUCN Red List species link

  • Did you know...

    Golden-headed lion tamarins live in big family groups. One of our females just had triplets, which is rare in wild troops of golden-headed lion tamarins. Females share parenting duties not only with the infants' dad, but also with the other young members of the group who enjoy carrying their siblings.

    Golden-headed lion tamarins are bolder than other tamarins due to their large social groups, where there is safety in numbers. Our group is always up to mischief and they love being out playing on their island on warm days.

    We have just welcomed new golden-headed lion tamarin triplets - you can read our recent press release here

  • Where to find us at Bristol Zoo

    You can find our golden-headed lion tamarins near Meerkat Lookout, opposite the otters

    Bristol Zoo Gardens map with golden-headed lion tamarins

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