Wanna bet? Meet Saguinus midas, one of my favorite animal charges. These tiny primates are natives of the Amazonian forests where they live in groups of four to 14 members. Highly territorial and ferocious despite their small size, they will rush to the defense of any threatened group member. Like hummingbirds and chihuahuas, they seem to think they are much bigger than they really are. Just how little are they? Less than a foot long, and most of that's tail! A really hefty female might weigh a smidgen over a pound. Still, they're known to jump distances of over 60 feet!
Their name of course derives from their colorful feet, which are red on our tamarins only if you really squint. They are also called, perhaps more aptly, Midas tamarins.
Only one female in each group will breed, but the father does most of the work after the (usually twin) babies are born. Other group members also help care for the young.
In the wild, they eat fruit, flowers, lizards, bugs, nectar, and assorted creepy-crawlies. In captivity, ours get a special tamarin diet supplemented by fruits, vegetables, mealworms, and crickets. Oh, and belly rubs from their caretakers. That is something that is never found in the wild, except perhaps from other tamarins.
Unfortunately, the wild that these guys inhabit is disappearing. No Amazonian forest means no red-handed tamarins. Hopefully if we all work together there will be forest enough left for our great-grandchildren to catch sight of tiny gremlins in the wild.