It’s fair to say there was a whole lot of monkey business at St Andrews Aquarium on Friday as the Fife visitor attraction welcomed its latest additions – just in time for Christmas.
Two tiny common marmosets were welcomed to the recently refurbished venue to thrill staff and visitors alike.
And the adorable little monkeys – a male and a female – wasted no time in settling into their new enclosure.
The pair, which as yet have no names, will play a key role in the aquarium’s education programme highlighting the effects of deforestation.
John Mace, managing director of St Andrews Aquarium, said: “To some of our visitors, seeing marmosets in an aquarium may be surprising.
“However, their enclosure is part of our wider education programme highlighting the effects of deforestation on our lands and seas.
“Everything is connected and it is important for us to showcase the whole ecosystem.”
Standing at only seven inches tall, the common marmoset is one of the world’s smallest monkeys.
Native only to east-central Brazil, they have been introduced into other areas and live within the cities of Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires, Argentina, as well as a number of forest habitats.
Common marmosets feed on gum, sap, latex, and resin and use their claw-like nails and long tails to cling to trees.
Staff hope the addition of the new marmosets will help boost visitor numbers in 2019 after what has been a very successful 2018.
It has been an eventful year at St Andrews Aquarium which included a £50,000 redevelopment of the aquarium’s enclosure to accommodate Humboldt penguins.
The enclosure, named ‘Penguin’s Cove’, housed six penguins who were all named after tennis star Andy Murray and members of his family following a public competition.
The aquarium also hit the headlines over the summer when its beloved six-foot mackeral statue mysteriously disappeared from the entrance.
‘Big Mac’ stood guard outside the attraction for four years before going missing in July, although it was returned to its usual spot less than a week later.