Christmas comes early for family of monkeys

Emperor tamarins at ZSL London Zoo received a special treat for their first Christmas together

MONKEYING around with a traditional festive treat, Christmas came early for these emperor tamarins this week.

The family of six mustachioed monkeys were treated to a Christmas pudding to celebrate their first yuletide together, after the birth of two males earlier this year at ZSL London Zoo.

However, instead of being filled with dried fruits and booze, the monkey’s indestructible boomer ball was stuffed full of slightly healthier treats.

The ball is part of the family’s enrichment programme to spark their natural curiosity and lively natures.

But while the rest of us shiver in the Big Freeze and get ready for a white Christmas, the tamarins will be basking in a balmy 25 to 30C in the zoo’s brand new Rainforest Life exhibit, along with two-toed sloths, golden headed lion tamarins and a tree anteater.

Senior zookeeper, Lucy Hawley says: “This is the family’s first Christmas together so as an extra special treat we thought we would give them everyone’s favourite festive treat, Christmas puddings!

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“Christmas maybe coming, but our emperor tamarins won’t be getting fat, as these Christmas puddings are painted boomer balls filled with their favourite healthy snacks.”