Aquarium’s delight at new marmoset twins

Miko the marmoset and baby at Tynemouth's Blue Reef Aquarium.
Miko the marmoset and baby at Tynemouth's Blue Reef Aquarium.

A pair of tiny marmoset monkeys have been born in the borough.

It is the first time Tynemouth Blue Reef Aquarium’s resident colony of miniature rescued monkeys has bred and keepers are delighted with how well first-time parents Miko and Minnie are coping.

The twins, which weighed less than 40 grams each when they were born, spend the first few weeks clinging to the backs of their parents.

Blue Reef’s Rosie Wiggin said: “Minnie and Miko are first-time parents, but both of them may have helped carry a litter in the past, especially as Minnie lived with her parents previously and siblings will help raise young.

“At the moment Miko carries both the babies on his back and only passes them over to Minnie to be groomed and for feeding.

“Both twins are feeding well, and Minnie and Miko are happily passing the babies around. We expect them to start exploring away from Miko soon, they are already becoming much more active on his back.”

“They will be weaned from Minnie’s milk at about three to four months old when they will start eating solid food.”

The aquarium’s Amazing Amazon is home to a colony of three different types of New World monkeys; common and black-tailed marmosets and cotton top tamarins.

All the monkeys have been rescued after being found living in unsuitable conditions while others have been made homeless after their owners could no longer look after them.

At Blue Reef their spacious, naturally-themed enclosures provide them with plenty to keep them busy including rope swings, climbing frames and an ever-changing programme of environmental enrichment features.