The Golden Lion Tamarin is native to the Atlantic coastal rainforests of Brazil and gets its name from the gorgeous reddish-orange colour of its hair, which is longer around the head making it look similar to a lion’s mane. It’s believed that this species gets its stunning colour from sunlight and the carotenoids (pigments) in their food.The Golden Lion Tamarin has a diverse, omnivorous diet consisting of fruit, flowers, nectar, bird eggs, insects and small vertebrates.
Golden Lion Tamarins are social and live in groups of up to eight members. These groups usually consist of one adult breeding pair and their offspring. Both male and female offspring may leave their family group at around four years of age to look for their own breeding opportunities.
The Golden Lion Tamarin is an endangered species with approximately 3,000 individuals left in the wild. It’s believed that the Golden Lion Tamarin has lost between 95-98% of its natural home range and can now only be found in small pockets of rainforest in Brazil. The major threat facing the species is habitat loss and fragmentation due to farming, logging and livestock in addition to the illegal wildlife trade.