Callithrix pygmaea niveiventris and Callithrix pygmaea pygmaea. Eastern pygmy marmosets, C. p. niveiventris, are restricted by the Rio Solimões, the Rio Purus, the Rio Madeira, and the Andes. Western pygmy marmosets (C. p. pygmaea) are found between the Rio Solimões and Rio Caquetá. (Cawthon Lang, 2005; de la Torre and Rylands, 2011; Cawthon Lang, 2005; de la Torre and Rylands, 2011), known as the pygmy marmoset, is a New World monkey species native to Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru. Its range stretches across the Andean foothills of southern Colombia and southeastern Peru, and reaches eastward through northern Bolivia and into the Amazon Basin of Brazil. The taxon is divided into two subspecies:
Pygmy marmosets thrive in multistratal river-edge forests at lower elevations. They typically dwell in the vertical strata of the understory rather than in the upper layers of the forest, avoiding both the forest floor and heights greater than 18 m above ground. Pygmy marmosets have also been observed inhabiting secondary forests. ("Great Apes & Other Primates: Pygmy Marmosets", 2012; Cawthon Lang, 2005; Eisenberg and Redford, 2000; de la Torre and Rylands, 2011)
Pygmy marmosets are the smallest extant monkeys, with an average body length of 13 cm. A coat of buff and grey fur is marked by yellow, green, and/or black ticking on the head and back. Infants initially have grey heads and yellow coats covered with black ticking, but exhibit the adult pattern within the first month of life. Though pygmy marmosets are not considered sexually dimorphic, females may be slightly heavier than males. Longer hair around the face and neck gives ("Great Apes & Other Primates: Pygmy Marmosets", 2012; Cawthon Lang, 2005; De Magalhaes and Costa, 2009)the appearance of a lion-like mane. Their hindlimbs are longer than their forelimbs, and their digits have claws known as tegulae. The halluces are an exception, as they possess flat nails known as ungulae. The average adult tail, typically marked with black bands, has a length of approximately 20 cm. Pygmy marmoset incisors are elongated and sharp, a likely adaptation to their diet of gums and sap. The similar eastern and western subspecies are difficult to differentiate, but sometimes exhibit dissimilar ventral hair color.
Female pygmy marmosets may give birth to 1 to 3 offspring, but most frequently give birth to fraternal twins. Approximately 3 weeks after giving birth, females enter a postpartum estrus during which mating occurs. With a gestation period of about 4.5 months, this system produces on average a set of twins from the dominant male and dominant female every 5 to 6 months. Pygmy marmosets have an extremely cooperative system of infant care, and only one dominant female per group produces offspring. Newborn pygmy marmosets weigh approximately 16 g. After nursing for approximately 3 months and reaching sexual maturity within a year to a year and a half, they reach their adult weight around age 2. Juveniles typically remain with their group until two subsequent birth cycles have passed. callitrichine known to exhibit, in a sexual context, genital presenting among females and tongue protrusion and vibrating among males. ("Great Apes & Other Primates: Pygmy Marmosets", 2012; Converse, et al., 1995; De Magalhaes and Costa, 2009; Heymann and Soini, 1999; Soini, 1987)is the only
Pygmy marmosets, like most callitrichines, are well known for sharing their parental duties. The father, the siblings of the new offspring, and even unrelated male group members have been observed carrying, grooming, and providing food for newborns. In fact, following the new offspring’s first 24 hours, the father and siblings become more and more responsible for carrying all of the young as time progresses, perhaps to relieve the stress of twins on the mother. In a study observing six groups of captive pygmy marmosets, the father did the vast majority of the carrying in 5 of the groups within 4 weeks after birth. Maternal duties were limited to nursing, anogenital licking, and protective retrieval in threatening situations—newborn pygmy marmosets begin gaining independence away from caretakers around three weeks of age, though on average they are not weaned until 3 months of age. ("Great Apes & Other Primates: Pygmy Marmosets", 2012; Wamboldt, et al., 1988)
Data concerning the longevity of wild pygmy marmosets is limited; however, birds of prey, small felids, and climbing snakes are common predators. The lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV), carried by the common mouse, has resulted in multiple deadly outbreaks of callitrichid hepatitis (CH) among captive pygmy marmosets across North America since the 1980s. ("Great Apes & Other Primates: Pygmy Marmosets", 2012; Cawthon Lang, 2005; De Magalhaes and Costa, 2009; Montali, et al., 1995)
Callithrix pygamaeus has an arboreal and diurnal lifestyle. Individuals are known to groom each other, likely as a form of bonding. While such docile and friendly interactions are commonly observed, pygmy marmosets are also very territorial, using scent glands to mark territories of up to 100 acres in area. Pygmy marmosets choose sleeping sites proximate to their feeding source at the time, and all group members awake and exit shortly after sunrise. Social activities are prominent between two feeding peaks—one after waking up, and the other in the late afternoon that leads into retirement to the sleeping site. Studies of wild pygmy marmosets in Bolivia suggest that they prefer clinging to vertical strata with their sharp claws while feeding, whereas quadrupedalism appears to be the preferred form of locomotion for travel. ("Great Apes & Other Primates: Pygmy Marmosets", 2012; Cawthon Lang, 2005; Jackson, 2011)
Pygmy marmosets generally exhibit a home range of approximately 0.1 to 1 hectares. (de la Torre and Snowdon, 2002)
Pygmy marmosets communicate via visual cues, scents, and vocalizations. White markings on the cheeks and a vertical stripe on the nose likely facilitate visual communication. Pygmy marmosets use scents to mark areas ranging from 25 to 100 acres. To the human ear, pygmy marmoset vocalizations resemble bird calls, and can even enter the ultrasonic spectrum. Loud, open mouth trills signal alarm, such as in the case of an encroaching predator. Squeaky, closed mouth trills are used for contact calls which allow pygmy marmosets to recognize each other. Soft twittering is a sign of submission. Studies on wild marmosets have suggested that pygmy marmosets vocalize in such a manner as to appropriate the effects of the acoustics of their locality. Further studies have shown the pygmy marmosets even alter their trills when paired with a new mate. ("Great Apes & Other Primates: Pygmy Marmosets", 2012; Cawthon Lang, 2005; Snowdon and Elowson, 1999; de la Torre and Snowdon, 2002)
The yellow, green, and brown pelage of pygmy marmosets provides a means of camouflage in their forest habitat. Pygmy marmosets have also developed a means of communication to alarm one another of potential threats. Their small body size, however, makes them potential prey for birds of prey, small felids, and climbing snakes. (Cawthon Lang, 2005)
It appears that the largest role these tiny primates play in their ecosystem involves their primary feeding mechanism, so they may impact the health of trees that they are feeding on. Larger, competing callitrichines such as saddleback and mustached tamarins, which also feed on exudates, may displace groups of smaller pygmy marmosets from the tree that their home base is centered around in order to take advantage of the previously drilled holes. Excluding such interactions, contact between Toxoplasma gondii, which is known to lead to fatal toxoplasmosis in captive groups. (Cawthon Lang, 2005; Dietz, et al., 1997)and other primates is typically uneventful. Additionally, ants may invade pygmy marmoset exudate trees, forcing relocation. Pygmy marmosets are susceptible to the parasite
Pygmy marmosets have been popular as pets, and international trade resulted in their placement in CITES Appendix I in the late 1970s. (de la Torre and Rylands, 2011)
There are no known adverse effects ofon humans.
Edward Wade (author), Yale University, Eric Sargis (editor), Yale University, Rachel Racicot (editor), Yale University, Tanya Dewey (editor), University of Michigan-Ann Arbor.
living in the southern part of the New World. In other words, Central and South America.
uses sound to communicate
Referring to an animal that lives in trees; tree-climbing.
having body symmetry such that the animal can be divided in one plane into two mirror-image halves. Animals with bilateral symmetry have dorsal and ventral sides, as well as anterior and posterior ends. Synapomorphy of the Bilateria.
an animal that mainly eats meat
uses smells or other chemicals to communicate
having markings, coloration, shapes, or other features that cause an animal to be camouflaged in its natural environment; being difficult to see or otherwise detect.
animals that use metabolically generated heat to regulate body temperature independently of ambient temperature. Endothermy is a synapomorphy of the Mammalia, although it may have arisen in a (now extinct) synapsid ancestor; the fossil record does not distinguish these possibilities. Convergent in birds.
parental care is carried out by females
An animal that eats mainly plants or parts of plants.
An animal that eats mainly insects or spiders.
offspring are produced in more than one group (litters, clutches, etc.) and across multiple seasons (or other periods hospitable to reproduction). Iteroparous animals must, by definition, survive over multiple seasons (or periodic condition changes).
parental care is carried out by males
Having one mate at a time.
having the capacity to move from one place to another.
the area in which the animal is naturally found, the region in which it is endemic.
the business of buying and selling animals for people to keep in their homes as pets.
Referring to a mating system in which a female mates with several males during one breeding season (compare polygynous).
rainforests, both temperate and tropical, are dominated by trees often forming a closed canopy with little light reaching the ground. Epiphytes and climbing plants are also abundant. Precipitation is typically not limiting, but may be somewhat seasonal.
communicates by producing scents from special gland(s) and placing them on a surface whether others can smell or taste them
remains in the same area
reproduction that includes combining the genetic contribution of two individuals, a male and a female
associates with others of its species; forms social groups.
uses touch to communicate
Living on the ground.
defends an area within the home range, occupied by a single animals or group of animals of the same species and held through overt defense, display, or advertisement
the region of the earth that surrounds the equator, from 23.5 degrees north to 23.5 degrees south.
uses sight to communicate
reproduction in which fertilization and development take place within the female body and the developing embryo derives nourishment from the female.
breeding takes place throughout the year
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