Goldenheaded lion tamarin

Leontopithecus chrysomelas

TAXONOMY

Midas chrysomelas Kuhl, 1820, Bahia, Brazil.

OTHER COMMON NAMES

French: Singe lion à tête d'or; German: Goldkopf-Lowenaffe; Portuguese: Mico-leao-de-cara-dourada.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

Male weight: 21.9 oz (620 g), female weight: 18.9 oz (535 g); head and body length: 8.7-10.2 in (22-26 cm); tail length: 13.0-15.4 in (33-39 cm). Rump with black fur; arms, part of tail, and fringe around face is golden in color.

DISTRIBUTION

Forest remnants in the southern part of the state of Bahia, Brazil. HABITAT

Tropical rainforest in coastal region, semi-deciduous forest further inland.

BEHAVIOR

Groups of 3-9 individuals, with usually two adult males and one adult female, plus immature individuals. Home-range size is 163-213 acres (66-86 ha), and groups travel 0.9-1.4 mi (1.4-2.2 km) per day. Where living in the same forest with Wied's black-tufted-ear marmoset (Callithrix kuhli), short term associations are formed.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

Golden-headed lion tamarins are mainly frugivorous and insectivorous; the diet is supplemented with flowers, exudates from the pods of a legume, and nectar. Prey is mainly searched in epiphytic bromeliads and includes cryptic or concealed insects, but also small vertebrates and snails.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

Little known, probably a flexible mating system (monogamy, polyandry).

CONSERVATION STATUS

Critically Endangered due to ongoing habitat destruction.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS Kept as pets. ♦

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