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Last Updated: Wednesday, 28 February 2007, 14:14 GMT
Endangered monkey twins are born
Tamarin baby
One of the new-born twins with its mother Magdalena
A Hampshire zoo has successfully bred a set of twins of one of the world's most endangered species of monkey.

The cotton-top tamarin twins were born as part of a breeding programme at Marwell Zoo, near Winchester.

They have been named Zambrono and Tol after places near the Las Coloradas Sanctuary in their native Colombia, South America.

The twins are being nursed and cared for by their mother Magdalena, while dad also shares responsibilities.

Shelly Parkes, the zoo's head keeper and section manager for the cotton-tops, said: "We are extremely proud that more than 50 cotton-tops have been born at Marwell.

"Magdalena and her partner Cauca are particularly successful - the latest arrivals are their fourth set of twins.

"We are all really pleased that the twins are healthy, and hopefully will one day also contribute to our successful breeding programme to safeguard the continued survival of these fascinating little monkeys."

A combination of deforestation and exports for biomedical research during the 1960s and 70s left cotton-top monkeys facing extinction from their native Columbia.

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