Friday, 8 April 2011

Awesome Nature #1

Golden Lion Tamarin
Type: Monkey  Lives In: Brazil  Conservation Status: Endangered

This distinctively-looking marmoset has long been a popular attraction at zoos and was always one of my favourites when I regularly visited Marwell Zoological Park when I was younger. In the wild they live only in the few tiny areas of Atlantic coastal forests that remain around the Rio de Janeiro region of Brazil. They are perfectly suited to this very specific kind of environment but since only 2% of their original habitat is remaining, they are now sadly at risk of extinction in the wild. They are typically around a foot long (30cm), not including their long tail, and spend most of their lives in trees where they live amongst thick vines which provide protection from the snakes, cats, and birds of prey who will kill them if they get the chance. They live in small groups and mostly dine on insects and fruit. Destruction of their habitat is also seeing numbers of this striking monkey fall and there are now only around 1500 left in the world.

Why They Are Awesome: Nearly all monkeys are awesome by default but just look at them!

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