Tuesday, November 17, 2015

The Pygmy Marmoset'S Diet

The pygmy marmoset feeds on tree sap, fruit, and insects.

The pygmy marmoset, or Callithrix pygmaea, is a species of monkey that inhabits Central and South America. The pygmy marmoset is the smallest species of monkey, weighing only about 4.5 ounces and measuring approximately 13 inches in length counting the tail. The pygmy marmoset has brown fur on its back and head, and yellow fur on its underbelly. The pygmy marmoset's diet is made up of tree gum, sap, insects and fruit.


The majority of the pygmy marmoset's diet is made up of exudates (the sap and gum) of forest vines and trees. Pygmy marmosets use their sharp teeth and strong jaws to bore holes into the trees and suck on the fluids inside. Pygmy marmosets have an enlarged portion of digestive tract called the cecum. This aids in their digestion of the gum from vines and trees by allowing more time for the digestive process.


Though the majority of the pygmy marmoset's diet is made up of tree sap, it also eats insects found in its tropical habitat such as grasshoppers and spiders.


A small portion of the pygmy marmoset's diet is made up of the nectar, berries, buds, fruit and flowers of tropical trees and plants.


Pygmy marmosets live in groups in the forest. These groups defend their territory against other marmoset groups. Often, within a group's territory, there are one or more trees that serve as the main source of exudates for the marmosets.

In Captivity

When in captivity such as a zoo, pygmy marmosets are fed a specially formulated canned food, plus yams, tree sap and insects.

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