Callithrix kuhlii 

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Primates Callitrichidae

Scientific Name: Callithrix kuhlii Coimbra-Filho, 1985
Common Name(s):
English Wied's Marmoset, Wied's Black-tufted-ear Marmoset
Spanish Sagüi
Taxonomic Notes: The validity and authorship of the name Callithrix kuhlii has been the subject of some debate. Hershkovitz (1975, p.142) was the first to indicate that Wied-Neuwied (1826) had referred to the marmoset of south-east Bahia as “Hapale penicillata Kuhlii” [sic]. However, Hershkovitz (1975, 1977) argued at length that kuhlii was not a valid taxon, being merely an intergrade between C. j. penicillata and C. j. geoffroyi. Vivo (1991, pp.80-81), on the other hand, argued that Wied-Neuwied (1826) had not intentionally given it this name, merely, and incorrectly, ascribing the authorship of the name penicillatato Kuhl. The first person to intentionally use the name kuhlii to describe the marmosets from south-east Bahia was Hershkovitz (1975), but his argument that it was not a valid taxonomic entity disqualifies the possibility of him being attributed authorship. This is therefore given to Coimbra-Filho (1985). A full description of the species is given in Coimbra-Filho et al. (2006).

In the past, the eastern Brazilian marmosets (penicillata É. Geoffroy, 1812, geoffroyi É. Geoffroy in Humboldt, 1812, aurita É. Geoffroy in Humboldt, 1812, and flaviceps Thomas, 1903) of the “jacchus group” were considered to be subspecies of Callithrix jacchus, following Hershkovitz (1977). All are now considered to be full species (see Coimbra-Filho 1984; Mittermeier et al. 1988; Marroig et al. 2004; Coimbra-Filho et al.. 2006).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Rylands, A.B. & Kierullf, M.C.M.
Reviewer(s): Mittermeier, R.A. & Rylands, A.B. (Primate Red List Authority)
This species is currently listed as Near Threatened as it is believed to have experienced a decline in the order of 20-25% over the past 18 years primarily as a result of habitat loss. Since it is rather adaptable to anthropogenic disturbance, declines are unlikely to be such that the species would require listing in a threatened category. Almost qualifies as threatened under criterion A2c.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Callithrix kuhlii occurs between the Rio de Contas and Rio Jequitinhonha in southern Bahia, just entering the north-easternmost tip of the state of Minas Gerais (Santos et al. 1987; Rylands et al. 1988). The western boundary is not well known, but undoubtedly defined by the inland limits of the Atlantic coastal forest. I. B. Santos (in Rylands et al. 1988) observed hybrids of C. penicillata and C. kuhlii in the region of Almenara, Minas Gerais, left bank of the Rio Jequitinhonha (16°41’S, 40°51’W). Its range is largely coincident with that of the Golden-headed Lion Tamarin Leontopithecus chrysomelas. These two callitrichids are broadly sympatric.

Surveys in 1986/1987 by Oliver and Santos (1991) demonstrated the presence of forms intermediate in appearance between C. kuhlii and C. penicillata north from the Rio de Contas, along the coast up to the regions of Valença and Nazaré, just south of the city of Salvador (Mittermeier et al. 1988). Individuals observed by Rylands near to Nazaré, just south of the city of Salvador lacked the white frontal blaze, and, although retaining the pale cheek patches typical of kuhlii, were paler grey. A photograph of the marmoset from Valença, Bahia, north of the Rio de Contas, is shown in Mittermeier et al. (1988, p.19). The variation in pelage colour of the marmosets in this region is considerable, but Coimbra-Filho et al. (1991/1992), showed that true C. kuhlii extended north through coastal Bahia into the state of Sergipe as far as the Rio São Francisco in the recent past. The present-day confusion has arisen from the widespread forest destruction, most marked and nearly total in Sergipe, and the introductions and invasions of C. jacchus and C. penicillata.
Countries occurrence:
Brazil (Bahia, Minas Gerais)
Additional data:
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:Population densities recorded from the Lemos Maia Experimental Station (CEPLAC/CEPEC), Una, Bahia were 8.70-9.09 groups/km² or 50.00-68.06 individuals/km², along three trails of 1 km, 1 km and 1.5 km (Rylands 1982).
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:An Atlantic forest species occurring in lowland and sub-montane humid forest, seasonal (mesophytic) rain forest, restinga and white sand piaçava forest. Also known to use cabruca - cacao plantations which are shaded with some native trees remaining from the original forest. They have been observed in secondary growth forest in abandoned rubber plantations. Callithix kuhlii is an adaptable species well able to live in degraded and secondary forests, depending on sufficient year round food sources and foraging sites. Near the coast, in the cocoa growing region, there is no distinct dry season with rainfall exceeding 2,000 mm a year (the heaviest rains are from March to June), but in the west of their range the forests are mesophytic with a distinct dry season, and in some areas the forests are semideciduous, with rainfall as low as 1,000 mm a year (Rylands 1989; Pinto and Rylands 1997).

Marmosets and tamarins are distinguished from the other monkeys of the New World by their small size, modified claws rather than nails on all digits except the big toe, the presence of two as opposed to three molar teeth in either side of each jaw, and by the occurrence of twin births. They eat fruits, flowers, nectar, plant exudates (gums, saps, latex) and animal prey (including frogs, snails, lizards, spiders and insects). Marmosets have morphological and behavioural adaptations for gouging trees trunks, branches and vines of certain species to stimulate the flow of gum, which they eat, and in some species form a notable component of the diet (Coimbra-Filho 1972; Rylands 1984). They live in extended family groups of between four and 15 individuals. Rylands (1982) observed groups sizes of 5 to 9 individuals (mean 6.56 ±1.33, n=8). Generally, only one female per group breeds during a particular breeding season. The groups defend home ranges 10-40 ha, the size depending on availability and distribution of foods and second-growth patches. Rylands (1982, 1989) recorded a home range of 12 ha for a group of 5 individuals.

Rylands (1982, 1984, 1989) studied the behaviour and ecology of C. kuhliii at the Lemos Maia Experimental Station, Una, Bahia. B. Raboy and G. Canale are also studying this species in the Una Biological Reserve (Raboy and Dietz 2000; Raboy et al. 2006).

Males 482 g (n=55) (Smith and Jungers 1997).

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The main threat to this species is forest loss and fragmentation, most particularly in the west of their range where cattle ranches predominate and forest fragmentation is most severe. They are also hunted for pets.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Occurs in the following protected areas:

Una Biological Reserve (18,500 ha)
Serra do Conduru State Park (8,941 ha)
Serra das Lontras National Park (16,800 ha)
Una Wildlife Refuge (23,000 ha)
Lemos Maia Experimental Station (CEPLAC/CEPEC) (495 ha)
Canavieiras Experimental Station (CEPLAC/CEPEC) (500 ha)

The expansion of the Una Bioloigcal Reserve is ongoing and of importance for this species as well as Cebus xanthosternos and Leontopithecus chrysomelas.

This species is listed on Appendix II of CITES.

Classifications [top]

1. Forest -> 1.5. Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Dry
suitability:Suitable  major importance:Yes
1. Forest -> 1.6. Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Moist Lowland
suitability:Suitable  major importance:Yes
1. Forest -> 1.9. Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Moist Montane
suitability:Suitable  major importance:Yes
14. Artificial/Terrestrial -> 14.3. Artificial/Terrestrial - Plantations
1. Land/water protection -> 1.1. Site/area protection
2. Land/water management -> 2.1. Site/area management

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
  Conservation sites identified:Yes, over entire range
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
  Included in international legislation:Yes
  Subject to any international management/trade controls:Yes
1. Residential & commercial development -> 1.1. Housing & urban areas
♦ timing:Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.1. Annual & perennial non-timber crops -> 2.1.2. Small-holder farming
♦ timing:Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.3. Livestock farming & ranching -> 2.3.2. Small-holder grazing, ranching or farming
♦ timing:Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.3. Livestock farming & ranching -> 2.3.3. Agro-industry grazing, ranching or farming
♦ timing:Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

5. Biological resource use -> 5.3. Logging & wood harvesting -> 5.3.5. Motivation Unknown/Unrecorded
♦ timing:Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

1. Research -> 1.2. Population size, distribution & trends
1. Research -> 1.3. Life history & ecology
1. Research -> 1.5. Threats
1. Research -> 1.6. Actions
3. Monitoring -> 3.1. Population trends

♦  Pets/display animals, horticulture
 Local : ✓ 

Bibliography [top]

Coimbra-Filho, A. F. 1972. Aspectos inéditos do comportamento de sagüis do gênero Callithrix (Callithricidae, Primates). Revista Brasiliera de Biologia 32: 505–512.

Coimbra-Filho, A. F. 1984. Situação atual dos calitriquídeos que ocorrem no Brasil (Callitrichidae-Primates). In: M. T. de Mello (ed.), A Primatologia no Brasil,, pp. 15-33. Sociedade Brasileira de Primatologia, Brasília, Brazil.

Coimbra-Filho, A. F. 1985. Sagüi-de-Wied Callithrix kuhli (Weid, 1826). FBCN/Inf., Rio de Janeiro.

Coimbra-Filho, A. F., Mittermeier, R. A., Rylands, A. B., Mendes, S. L., Kierulff, M. C. M. and Pinto, L. P. de S. 2006. The taxonomic status of Wied’s black-tufted-ear marmoset, Callithrix kuhlii (Callitrichidae, Primates). Primate Conservation 21: 1–24.

Coimbra-Filho, A. F., Rylands, A. B., Pissinatti, A. and Santos, I. B. 1991/1992. The distribution and conservation of the buff-headed capuchin monkey, Cebus xanthosternos, in the Atlantic forest region of eastern Brazil. Primate Conservation 12-13: 24–30.

de Vivo, M. 1991. Taxonomia de Callithrix Erxleben, 1777 (Callitrichidae, Primates). Fundacao Biodiversitas para Conservacao da Diversidade Biologica, Belo Horizonte, Brazil.

Hershkovitz, P. 1975. Comments on the taxonomy of Brazilian marmosets (Callithrix, Callitrichidae). Folia Primatologica 24: 137-172.

Hershkovitz, P. 1977. Living New World monkeys (Platyrrhini), with an introduction to Primates. University of Chicago Press, Chicago, USA.

Marroig, G., Cropp, S. and Cheverud, J. M. 2004. Systematics and evolution of the jacchus group of marmosets (Platyrrhini). American Journal of Physical Anthropology 123: 11-22.

Mittermeier, R. A., Rylands, A. B. and Coimbra-Filho, A. F. 1988. Systematics: species and subspecies - an update. In: R. A. Mittermeier, A. B. Rylands, A. F. Coimbra-Filho and G. A. B. da Fonseca (eds), Ecology and Behavior of Neotropical Primates, pp. 13-75. World Wildlife Fund, Washington, DC, USA.

Oliver, W. L. R. and Santos, I. B. 1991. Threatened endemic mammals of the Atlantic forest region of south-east Brazil. Wildlife Preservation Trust, Special Scientific Report 4: 1-125.

Pinto, L. P. S. and Rylands, A. B. 1997. Geographic distribution of the golden-headed lion tamarin, Leontopithecus chrysomelas: implications for its management and conservation. Folia Primatologica 68: 161-180.

Raboy, B. E. and Dietz, J. M. 2000. Patterns of interspecific associations between wild golden-headed lion tamarins and sympatric Wied's marmosets in southern Bahia, Brazil. American Journal of Primatology 51(1): 83-84.

Raboy, B. E., Canale, G. R. and Dietz, J. M. 2006. Ecology, behavior, and conservation status of the Wied’s black tufted-ear marmoset (Callithrix kuhli). merican Journal of Primatology 68(1): 65-66.

Rylands, A. B. 1982. The behaviour and ecology of three species of marmosets and tamarins (Callitrichidae, Primates) in Brazil. Doctoral Thesis, University of Cambridge.

Rylands, A. B. 1984. Exudate-eating and tree-gouging by marmosets (Callitrichidae, Primates). In: A. C. Chadwick and S. L. Sutton (eds), Tropical Rain Forest: The Leeds Symposium, pp. 155–168. Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society, Leeds, UK.

Rylands, A. B. 1989. Sympatric Brazilian callitrichids: the black-tufted-ear marmoset, Callithrix kuhli, and the golden-headed lion tamarin, Leontopithecus chrysomelas. Journal of Human Evolution 18(7): 679-695.

Rylands, A. B. 1996. Habitat and the evolution of social and reproductive behavior in Callitrichidae. American Journal of Primatology 38: 5–18.

Rylands, A. B., Spironelo, W. R., Tornisielo, V. L., Lemos de Sá, R. M, Kierulff, M. C. M. and Santos, I. B. 1988. Primates of the Rio Jequitinhonha valley, Minas Gerais, Brazil. Primate Conservation 9: 100-109.

Santos, I. B., Mittermeier, R. A., Rylands, A. B. and Valle, C. 1987. The distribution and conservation status of primates in southern Bahia, Brazil. Primate Conservation 8: 126-142.

Smith, R. J. and Jungers, W. L. 1997. Body mass in comparative primatology. Journal of Human Evolution 32: 523-559.

Wied-Neuwied, M. and Prinz, zu. 1826. Beiträge zur Naturgeschichte von Brasilien, Vol. 2.

Citation: Rylands, A.B. & Kierullf, M.C.M. 2008. Callithrix kuhlii. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T3575A9955873. . Downloaded on 19 June 2018.
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