Marmosets of the Callithrix genus are species representative of the (Brazilian) Atlantic Forest, also known as “Mata Atlântica.” This once important ecosystem has today been reduced to a few forest fragments.
The species that can be seen at the Biodôme, the common marmoset, is found in the last tropical rainforests of northeastern Brazil as well as gallery forests, those forest corridors that run alongside rivers or wetlands.
The common marmoset has also been released outside its natural range, in particular in southwestern Brazil, where it competes with the other species of small native primates like the golden lion tamarin or other species of marmoset.
Generally speaking, very few common marmosets are found in the heart of forests. It is a species that prefers environments that are a little more open, like the edges of forests, urban parks, gardens in rural villages and plantations.
It is now common to come across bands of marmosets in cities like Rio de Janeiro, which is a good illustration of the species’ great adaptability.
Even though it adapts to a variety of habitats, the marmoset needs to have access to enough sap-producing trees that it can feed its family. In addition, vegetation must be dense enough so that it can conceal itself there in the event a predator arrives.