What do finger monkeys eat? Well, they can eat a surprising amount! The finger monkey is also referred to as the Pygmy Maromoset. It comes from the smallest monkey species on the globe. In fact, a baby finger monkey happens to be so tiny that it can comfortably hold onto the human finger in the same fashion as a larger monkey on a tree branch. They are tiny creatures that are native to South America’s rainforests i.e. Eastern Peru, Northern Bolivia, southeastern Colombia, Brazil and eastern Ecuador. They spend a significant part of their time high up in trees eating Arabic gum, their favorite snack. A Pygmy Maromoset has a body length that varies from 14cm to 16 cm and its tail is 15-20 cm long.
The male weighs an average of 140 grams while the female weighs approximately 120 grams. Other common names of the Finger Monkey are Little lion and Pocket Monkey. In the wild, it can live up to 15 years while this figure reduces to between 6 years and 9 years in captivity. They are an endangered species but easily adapt to new environments.
Finger Monkey Diet
The type of food and eating habits of the Finger Monkey in the wild should be closely mimicked in captivity whenever possible to ensure proper growth, good health and long life. What do Finger Monkeys eat? The following information should provide a general idea:
Finger Monkey in the Wild
Diet is certainly an essential aspect when you decide to raise a finger monkey. They are generally omnivorous animals. A finger monkey that lives in the wild feeds on Arabic gum, resin, latex and tree sap using their lower teeth that puncture trees. Occasionally, they will snack on some small insects, small bird eggs and butterflies. These monkeys also eat chopped fleshy fruits and suck on sweet tropical flower nectar.
It should be noted that these animals need high quantities of vitamin C, vitamin A and vitamin D3 in their daily diet. Finger monkeys get calcium from tree gum. The exudates they consume make up or their primary source of calcium, protein and carbohydrates. They also indulge in small amounts of plant parts and arthropods.
Finger Monkey in the Captivity
As earlier mentioned, Finger Monkeys can easily adapt to new environments to survive thus can kept as pets. In captivity, finger monkey should be provided with insects such as mealworms, grasshoppers and crickets. Avoid feeding it with any processed meats. However, feed it with an array of protein forms, vegetables and fruits. Protein in the diet of a finger monkey should include cooked chicken, turkey or fish. Hard boiled or scrambled eggs are also viable options.
Other foods that can be fed to finger monkeys include the following:
- Rice cereal
- Baby formula
- Monkey biscuits, these are specific to Finger Monkeys
- Tiny reptiles
- Flies and spiders
- Miniature lizards
- Fresh leaves
The foods above should be readily available in local pet stores at reasonable prices.
Finger Monkeys and Hydration
It is important to keep your Pygmy Marmoset monkey hydrated at all times, but the water should be clean and not contain fluoride. In their natural environment, they would drink lots of water in shoots and flowers. If it does not consume enough water, it will suffer from preventable ailments. Other fluids it can consume include the following:
• Goat’s milk
• Almond milk
• Sap from any tropical tree
The sooner you get your Pygmy Marmoset into a diet routine that is well-balanced, the higher the chances of spending additional time with them in future. It should also be noted that feeding baby finger monkeys require skill and patience. This is because baby finger monkeys should be fed when lying on their stomach rather than on their back. It is the only way of ensuring that they do not choke or die. In the same way human infants move from fluids to solids, so should Pygmy Marmoset babies. Furthermore, the animals may become aggressive when hungry, so this should serve as a cue for you to feed them. If you are looking for some additional information, we found this great video:
What do Finger Monkeys Eat?
Generally, preservatives and additives are not suitable for the diet of a finger monkey. The above insightful information clearly shows that you should always maintain a proper nutrition if you want to raise a healthy and happy primate. What do finger monkeys eat? Now you know.