Fun Emperor Tamarin Facts For Kids

Abhijeet Modi
Oct 20, 2022 By Abhijeet Modi
Originally Published on Aug 05, 2021
Edited by Monisha Kochhar
Fact-checked by Shreya Yadav
Emperor Tamarin facts include that it is famous for its long white mustache.
Age: 3-18
Read time: 7.6 Min

Have you ever heard of a very tiny monkey with a long mustache? In this article, you will be delighted to learn about such a tiny monkey with our emperor tamarin facts.

The emperor tamarin was discovered in the 1907s. The emperor tamarin is named after German Emperor Wilhelm II. This long white mustache helps to differentiate it from different members of the species of the same tamarin group. This animal belongs to the tamarin species and is found in deep and tall rainforests. They have minimal body weight, making it easy to pounce from one branch to another in search of food. This emperor tamarin stays in groups.

It has a long multi-colored tail and a funny long white mustache. This small size monkey has gray-colored fur and yellowish hair on its chest. The tamarin, who usually live in groups, has black hands and feet, with a reddish-orange colored tail, which helps to hold the branches and jump from one tree to another with ease. The life span of these species is 10-20 years.

Read the below information for further details of this funny and tiny monkey species. You may also like tarsier facts and Sumatran orangutan facts if you need more articles with interesting animal overviews.


Emperor Tamarin Interesting Facts

What type of animal is an emperor tamarin?

Emperor tamarins are active monkeys that belong to the tamarin species, with the scientific name Saguinus imperator. These squirrel-sized monkeys are found in South America, Peru, and Bolivia, well known for their beard and mustaches. They are further classified into two varieties. One is the bearded emperor tamarin, and another is the black-chinned emperor tamarin.

These two species differ in their hair color on their chest, belly, and arms. The black-chinned emperor tamarin has white hair on its chin, whereas the bearded emperor tamarin has a large white-haired beard.

What class of animal does an emperor tamarin belong to?

The emperor tamarins belong to the Mammalia class. The Mammalia class is where young ones are fed with their mother's milk.

How many emperor tamarins are there in the world?

It is observed that the population of these wild monkeys is reducing gradually. The exact population of these species around the world is not known. It is observed that there are 500 emperor tamarins in zoos worldwide.

Where does an emperor tamarin live?

Emperor tamarins are located in Peru, Brazil, Bolivia, and the southwestern parts of the Amazon basin. Manu national park in Peru is taking proper essential steps for the conservation of this emperor tamarin population.

What is an emperor tamarin's habitat?

Emperor tamarins live in dense rainforests, deep, dense woods, lowland tropical forests, seasonally flooded forests. As their primary food is fruits, these dense forests are idle places to live. To protect from predators, the emperor tamarins hardly stay on the ground. These active primates spend most of their time on top tree branches.

Who do emperor tamarins live with?

Emperor tamarins like to live in groups. Their small group ranges from two to eight members. There may be as many as 15 tamarins in a group. Typically there will be two male tamarins with a single female tamarin, they also like to live with other tamarin family species such as the saddleback tamarin. The main reason for the emperor tamarins to live in extended family groups is to protect themselves from other predators.

How long does an emperor tamarin live?

The lifespan of an emperor tamarin is about 10-20 years on average. In some rare cases, the tamarin's lifespan extended up to 23 years. The lifespan of any animal depends on the environmental and climatic conditions, food availability.

How do they reproduce?

The reproduction process in this species is generally sexual reproduction. During the breeding season, the female emperor mates with two males (called a polyandrous mating system) in their group. They prefer the rainy season for breeding because of abundant food availability. The gestation period is between 140-145 days. After completing this gestation period, the female gives birth to single or twin emperor tamarin babies. In some rare cases, triplets are also possible.

The emperor tamarin's baby is taken care of by both female and male parents, while the female emperor feeds her baby, the male emperor carries the young one on their backs.

Males carrying the baby on their back is a risky task because of its small structure. The entire group of order primates family takes care of emperor tamarin's baby (known as alloparenting). Males play a crucial role in grooming the baby. These baby emperor tamarin monkeys gain sexual maturity at around 16-20 months.

What is their conservation status?

This primates' conservation status is Least Concern, while deforestation, illegal pet trade, and clearing the lands for mining and industrial purposes affect the emperor tamarin population. Manuripi-Heath Amazonian Wildlife National Reserve at Bolivia is protecting these wild monkey species.

Emperor Tamarin Fun Facts

What do emperor tamarins look like?

The emperor tamarin looks like a squirrel-sized monkey with very tiny size and a long tail. Its long mustache adds a fun look to its small-sized body. Unlike other primates, it has sharp claws that give a perfect grip to hold the tree branches. This animal can hop and jump to nearly the end of the branches because of its lightweight bodies, which is difficult for other animals.

How cute are they?

These species are adorable small animals. The emperor tamarin's behavior draws our attention with innocent looks and funny actions, as well as distinct facial hair. Its tiny body with funny long sized mustaches looks like a mix of different animals. Their funny actions and playful nature add extra cuteness.

How do they communicate?

These emperor tamarin Saguinus imperator species communicate by hissing sounds, whistling, tongue flicking, and long chirping calls. They usually communicate to alert their group away from predators. These tiny monkeys use their facial expressions to pass the message to other group members.

How big is an emperor tamarin?

This small perky monkey has a body length between 9-10 in (23-25 cm).

How fast can an emperor tamarin move?

These highly energetic and playful animals are very active and expert in moving from one end of the branch to another. This new world monkey spends most of its lifetime jumping on the trees. The traveling speed of the emperor tamarins is 24 mph (38.6 kph).

How much does an emperor tamarin weigh?

These tiny, mischievous emperor tamarins weigh around 14-17.6 oz (400-500 g). They weigh significantly less among new world monkeys. The male emperor tamarin weighs more than the female. Their miniature size helps them get their food even from the delicate branches.

What are their male and female names of the species?

There is no particular specification about this. Generally, the female species is called 'female emperor tamarin', and the male species is called 'male emperor tamarin'. As this species lives in groups, a group of these monkeys is called a 'troop'.

What would you call a baby emperor tamarin?

The young of this species is called an 'emperor tamarin baby'. The male tamarin and other troop members groom these young ones.

What do they eat?

As they are residents of a vast, dense forest, an emperor tamarin's diet comprises different tree fruits. Its diet consists of fruits, nectar, gum, flowers, insects, and bird eggs. These animals are fed with carrots and other boiled veggies in some zoos.

Are they aggressive?

Emperor tamarin's behavior is moderately aggressive. Their aggressiveness is seen when other animals try to occupy their territories for food and shelter or when other rivals get close to their partners. Usually, troops consist of more male tamarins, but the oldest female tamarin leads the group.

Would they make a good pet?

As these wild primates are accustomed to forest life, they cannot be forced to adjust to an unnatural environment; if humans think of adopting it as a pet, it indirectly encourages the pet trade. Though they are not dangerous animals because of their predominant and aggressive nature, they are best suited to staying in wildlife. So, we suggest that you do not consider these socially active primates as pets.

Did you know...

Here are some interesting facts about the emperor tamarin monkey.

These omnivore animals primarily depend on fruits; they help spread the seeds for forest regeneration. So, indirectly they are key in generating food for other forest habitats.

Regarding emperor tamarin adaptations, most of the males and females of emperor tamarins are dichromatic vision, meaning they can view only two colors. This quality helps them to detect hidden predators like snakes. Some of the female emperor tamarins have trichromatic vision, which helps detect even the ripest fruits.

The territorial emperor tamarins leave scents on the trees and leaves to mark their territory. They even use this scent mark technique to communicate with their fellow team members.

Though males weigh more than the female species, the oldest female manages the group, and the male tamarin concentrates on grooming the younger one. This quality may help to differentiate the male species from the female.

The female tamarin, who mates with multiple partners, shows sexual interest to the opposite partner by sticking out its tongue towards the male partner.

Who is the predator of the emperor tamarin?

This habitat is prone to danger from many predators like snakes, wild cats, birds, and humans because of its smaller size.

How did the emperor tamarin get its name?

The emperor tamarin is a unique monkey with a long white mustache that belongs to the tamarin species. This monkey was named after late German Emperor Wilhelm II because of its diverse look. He was the last German emperor.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other mammals including Coquerel's Sifaka, or Bornean orangutan.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one on our golden lion tamarin coloring pages.


Emperor Tamarin Facts

What Did They Prey On?

Fruits, carrots, insects, gum, nectar, and leaves

What Type of Animal were they?


Average Litter Size?


How Much Did They Weigh?

14-17.6 oz (400-500 g)

What habitat Do they Live In?

rainforest, tall tropical rainforests

Where Do They Live?

amazon basin, extreme southeastern peru, northwestern brazil, and northwestern bolivia

How Long Were They?

Body length: 9-10 in (23-26 cm)Tail length: 13.8–16.3 in (35–41.5 cm)‍

How Tall Were They?








Scientific Name

Saguinus imperator

What Do They Look Like?

Brown, gray, black and white

Skin Type


What Are Their Main Threats?

humans, wild cats, snakes, hawks

What is their Conservation Status?

Least Concern
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Written by Abhijeet Modi

Master of Computer Science

Abhijeet Modi picture

Abhijeet ModiMaster of Computer Science

An experienced and innovative entrepreneur and creative writer, Abhijeet holds a Bachelor's and Master's degree in Computer Application from Birla Institute of Technology, Jaipur. He co-founded an e-commerce website while developing his skills in content writing, making him an expert in creating blog posts, website content, product descriptions, landing pages, and editing articles. Passionate about pushing his limits, Abhijeet brings both technical expertise and creative flair to his work.

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