No Two Marmosets are the Same

Did you know that no two marmosets are the same, even when born as twins? They always give birth to fraternal offsprings due to what scientists call “germline chimerism.” Simply put, a marmoset’s sex cells normally belongs to another marmoset, which may or may not have his sex cells. No use DNA-testing these monkeys to see if they’re related.

Scientists believe the reason for this distinction is the fusion of the twins’ respective placenta. As the placentae fuse, stem cells are mixed together in a giant vat, randomizing the set of cells that would go to each of the twins. Despite their genetic profile, twin marmosets don’t feel estranged to one another.

Marmosets carry a complex social mechanism, likened to those of insects like bees and ants. These so-called “social insects” rely on coordinating their actions, from harvesting their food to defending their colony, for their survival. The marmoset’s methods of communication include contact calls and forming care groups.

This is why it’s important to keep in touch with your pet marmoset at all times. With enough love and devotion, getting a marmoset to trust you is no different from making new friends. With proper care for these pets, they’ll even make friends with other animals.

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