Blackpool Zoo stolen monkeys: Mamma gives birth to twins

Tamarin twins Image copyright Blackpool Zoo
Image caption The twins were born at Blackpool Zoo earlier in August

A monkey recently returned to Blackpool Zoo after it was stolen during a break-in has given birth to twins.

The cotton-top tamarin, one of five monkeys stolen by thieves at the zoo in April, was thought to be in the early stages of pregnancy when it was taken.

The twins, yet to be sexed and named, are doing "extremely well" along with their mother Mamma, the zoo said.

Four of the monkeys were found on a doorstep in West Yorkshire, but a baby belonging to Mamma is still missing.

Charlotte Pennie, from Blackpool Zoo, said the twins would be "vital for the international breeding programme" as the species is extremely endangered.

Image copyright Blackpool zoo
Image caption Two female and one baby cotton-top tamarins and two male emperor tamarins were taken in April

There are said to be about 6,000 tamarins in the wild in their native Colombia, with numbers largely reduced through deforestation.

The animals can fetch up to thousands of pounds on the black market in the UK and abroad.

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