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Pygmy Marmoset: The Smallest Monkey on Earth printer.gif

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The Pygmy Marmoset is the smallest monkey in the world. Tipping the scales at a mere 6 ounces and measuring only 6 inches long, the pygmy marmoset is an fast climber that zips around the rainforest's trees. Do not let their big, furry mane fool you into thinking they are bigger than they actually are.

These rarely-sighted animals live in the middle and lower canopy levels of the rainforest. The pygmy marmoset is at home in a flooded rainforest and throughout the Amazon Basin of Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, and Brazil.

Pygmy Marmosets are diurnal, or active during the day, leaping from tree branch to tree branch in search of their favorite food: tree sap and tree gum. They will also eat spiders, insects, fruits, and leaves.

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Pygmy marmosets live in social groups, like most species of monkeys. However, instead of communicating through loud grunts and shrill cries like other monkeys, the pygmy marmoset emits a whistle that is too high pitch for humans to hear. Pygmy marmosets also communicate through facial expression and physical body language.

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Given their habitat and size, it is difficult to see pygmy marmosets in the wild. However, I am very excited at the thought of seeing one in its natural habitat. What do you think would be a good way to look for pygmy marmosets?

For further exploration, check out the following web sites.

The Wilderness Classroom's Rainforest Library

The National Zoo's Pygmy Marmoset Page

Kids Go Wild

How should we change our habits to help the planet?

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