Also known as the Cotton Top Tamarin, the Cotton-headed Tamarin lives in the humid forests in the south to dry deciduous forest in the north of Colombia. Although they are recorded from primary and secondary forests.
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Marmosets and tamarins are distinguished from the other monkeys of the New World by their small size, modified claws rather than nails on all digits except the big toe, the presence of two as opposed to three molar teeth in either side of each jaw, and by the occurrence of twin births. They eat fruits, flowers, nectar, plant exudates (gums, saps, latex) and animal prey (including frogs, snails, lizards, spiders and insects).
Tamarins live in extended family groups of between four and 15 individuals, but usually 2-8. Saguinus oedipus lives in groups of 2-9. Neyman (1977, 1979) observed groups of 3-13, Savage et al. (1996a,b) observed reproductively active groups that ranged in size from 3-6 and Gonzalez (2014) observed groups 1- 9. Generally, only one female per group breeds during a particular breeding season.
Habitat destruction through forest clearing is the main cause of this collapse, and the cotton-top has lost more than three-quarters of its original habitat to deforestation, while the lowland forest in which it lives has been reduced to 5% of its historical range.
The illegal pet trade and scientific research have also been cited as factors by the IUCN. While biomedical studies have recently limited their use of this species, illegal capture for the pet trade still plays a major role in endangering the cotton-top.
Rodríguez, V., Defler, T.R., Guzman-Caro, D., Link, A., Mittermeier, R.A., Palacios, E. & Stevenson, P.R. 2020. Saguinus oedipus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2020: e.T19823A115573819. https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2020-2.RLTS.T19823A115573819.en. Downloaded on 31 January 2021.
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