Golden Lion Tamarin
Leontopithecus rosalia rosalia

CLASS: Mammalia
ORDER: Primates
FAMILY: Callitrichidae

Body length approximately 1 foot

Brazilian rain forests

Tree tops in rain forests

Wild - Fruits, insects
Zoo - Fruits, vegetables, insects


  • Head and body length about 8-13 inches
  • Tail about 12-16 inches in length
  • Adult weight is 1.2 lbs.
  • Pelage (coat) is long and silky
  • Name "lion" refers to the mane of hair on shoulders
  • Coat is gold, reddish, or buffy to white

Swift; long limbs and partially webbed fingers enable them to travel with amazing speed through dense jungle canopy.

Litters of one, two, or three born from January to June; born fully furred, with eyes open and weighing about two ounces. Father is the principal carrier of the newborn after about the third week of life. Juvenile family members also care for the infants.

CITES App. I; Tamarins are extremely ENDANGERED. Their numbers have declined because of habitat destruction and because of mass exportation for laboratory use and pet trade. Zoos are involved in release programs for golden lion tamarins.

"Walker's Mammals of the World", Vol., Ronald M. Nowak