Baby Tamarins in Santa Barbara

The zoo welcomes two new golden lion tamarins.

ANIMAL FAVORITES: Pretty much everyone is sweet on a particular beastie or two, and for various reasons. Perhaps the animal lives in the area in which we grew up; perhaps it is the first animal we remember seeing at safari park. Perhaps it is simply that the animal in question is beautiful and majestic and inspires love. One of our instant wins in all matters animalia is when an animal is named after another animal, or at least in part. It suggests that Animal A shares some of the characteristics of Animal B, which intrigues. Look no further than the Golden Lion Tamarin, which is, in fact, not a lion, or even feline. It is a monkey, which you know instantly, of course, but the Golden Lion Tamarin's feathery mane? Yep. Totally leonine. We do love this monkey so, and so we were delighted, with all the zoo births going down right now, to hear that twin tamarins were born in Santa Barbara a couple of weeks back.

D BATTERIES: The Santa Barbara Zoo reports that the twins were the size of D batteries at birth. If that isn't an "awww"-inducer right there we're not sure what is. The twins also have older siblings, too, meaning if you make a tamarin trek you'll get your fill of the maned beauties. This informative National Geographic page describes the golden lions as "rare"; now all we want to do is spend a springtime Saturday admiring them in person.

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