Monday, June 28, 2010

All Creatures Great and Small - The Pygmy Marmoset

All things bright and beautiful,
All creatures great and small,
All things wise and wonderful,
The Lord God made them all.

hymn by Cecil Alexander

On a scale of 1-10 what "Aww" rating would you give these little guys? When this picture was taken at the Froso Zoo in Sweden, they were a few days old. They were about the size of a coin when they were born.

A mommy pygmy marmy usually gives birth to twins, and shortly afterwards the papa makes himself useful by sharing in carrying the babies around. Their family group is called a troop. Though sociable, they will make noisy calls and chase other marmoset troops away from their territory.

An adult pygmy marmoset weighs about a half a pound, and is about 14 inches long and that includes a black ringed tail which is about 8 inches. Let's see, 14-8 = 6, wow. Their coat is a tawny shade and even has green striations making them fairly camouflaged in the forests.

They live just under the canopy of the evergreen forests of South America. Most monkeys have nails but these marmosets have claws, with the exception of their big toe. With claws and long flexible fingers they scamper up and down tree trunks, clinging on to the trees to feed on sap, one of their favorite foods. They have specialized incisors allowing them to gnaw through the toughest tree bark. They also like to eat fruit, leaves, and insects.

Joan Embery served as the goodwill ambassador of the San Diego Zoo in California for 32 years. During those years she was often a guest on the “Tonight Show,” with host Johnny Carson (the best host the show ever had - my opinion). The following YouTube clip is from one of the animal episodes.

photo credits:
1. Froso Zoo Family Park in Sweden
2. Flickr bossejonsson59's photostream
3. Flickr SrimanAravind's photostream
4. Flickr SrimanAravind's photostream


  1. OH ! They are so small and so very cute! I wonder if the zoo in Houston has any of them. It is about zoo time for the grands! I always enjoyed Jonny Carson with the animals.
    Thank you for sharing this.

  2. Oh, what tiny little things. They look so fragile and adorable.

  3. They are so cute....So glad to meet a new sorority sister....Hope you will stop by and visit me...I have a giveaway I am drawing for tomorrow...

  4. Wonderful post with so much information. They are so cute especially the babies. Thanks for this one. Diane

  5. I always thought they were the cutest little things... I forgot about Joan Embery I wonder where she is now... She was also my favorite guest.

  6. These little ones remind me of the little toy animals that children wrap around pencils.

    Do not know about right now, but Joan did have a ranch, I believe in California, where she had show horses, and she serves/served on ever so many boards, agencies, etc. dealing with zoos, and related subjects.

  7. Amazing little creatures but I seem to be in the minority as I do not think they are cute at all. Sorry but felt I should be honest :(

  8. Lindy, no need for an apology. They are their cutest when young, and not everyone is going to think so even then.

  9. what adorable little creatures!! How cute! I would love to see one live.