Tamarin species returns after 15 years!

We are excited to announce the return of white-lipped tamarins (Saguinus labiatus) to Colchester Zoo after 15 years.

On 23rd February, we welcomed two female white-lipped tamarins from Usti Zoo in Czechia. On 6th March, we then exchanged one of the females for a male with Hanwell Zoo, meaning that both zoos now have a breeding pair. This was a recommendation from the EAZA Ex situ Programme (EEP), and was the best way to transport them to reduce stress on the animals and to save costs. 

Both new arrivals have remained off-show to allow them time to get used to their new environment. We are delighted to say that they have settled in well together and are now starting to form a bond. It is hoped that in the future, the pair will breed and we will be able to share exciting news of offspring.

Over the next few weeks, the Animal Care Team will start to get to know their individual personalities but have already confirmed that the female is much bolder than our male. Both tamarins are yet to be named by the team – watch this space.

On 9th April, our duo were moved to their new home inside Worlds Apart, located next to Penguini’s Restaurant. This area is also home to our Goeldi’s monkeys, Pedro and Pascal, Southern tamandua and Linne’s two-toed sloth.

White-lipped tamarins, also known as red-chested mustached tamarin, are currently listed as ‘Least Concern’ on the IUCN Red list of Threatened Species however their home is currently under treat from deforestation.

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