Callithrix and Leontopithecus exhibit ecological differences that have implications for the patterns of infant care. In C. jacchus, which uses a small home range because it depends mainly on plant exudates, infants can forage independently early in their life. L. chrysomelas, which feeds mainly on fruits and insects, needs larger home ranges and, therefore, its infants have a more extensive period of dependence. Three families of C. jacchus and four families of L. chrysomelas were studied in captivity. The animals were observed starting from the birth of the infants up to their 8th week of age. Our results suggest that the pattern of infant transfer in L. chrysomelas did not follow the one reported for L. rosalia in that transfers from the mother occurred much earlier. L. chrysomelas infants were carried for about 15% of total time during the 8th week of life against less than 1% in C. jacchus in the same week. Infant care seems to be more extensive in L. chrysomelas than in C. jacchus, and the period of exclusive mother carrying in L. chrysomelas is shorter than that observed in L. rosalia.

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