Marmosets - Hand Rearing

Sometimes marmosets give birth to more than 2 monkeys. Because the mother can only take care of 2 monkeys, generally the rest dies within a week of birth. To prevent this from happening, it may be necessary to hand-rear one of them.

Don’t underestimate it, HAND-REARING is not an easy job !

The first 3 weeks, the youngsters must be fed every 2 hours (0800-2400) with powdered human milk substitute and protein multivitamin concentrate. For the first feeding use 1 teaspoon glucose in 28 ml sterile water (give only 0.3-0.5ml). After 3 weeks you can start with baby cereal from time to time.

Instead of using human milk substitute you should consider giving them Primilac.  This is a milk substitute for NON-human primates which is sold by Bio-Serv.

Gently rub the anal region with cotton wool soaked in baby oil after each feed. This is necessary to keep the anal skin moist.

Keep the infants at a temperature of 25-28°C in a wooden nest box (humidity at 50%).

Give the infant a ‘artificial mother’ to cling to (like a towel).

After one week give 1 drop of vitamin D3 (twice a week) to your marmoset baby.

 

COMMON MARMOSET – HAND REARING – Timetable Example 1

Feeding Quantities

Age

Quantity

1-3 days

0.3-0.5 ml

3-7 days

0.5-1.0 ml

1-2 weeks

1-2 ml

2-3 weeks

2-3 ml

3-4 weeks

3-5 ml

4-5 weeks

3-6 ml

5-6 weeks

3-9 ml

6-7 weeks

3-10 ml

 

Day 1:

Every 2 hours

Feed 1:

1 teaspoon (0.5ml) glucose in 28ml sterile water

Feed 2&3:

1/2 teaspoon glucose and 1/2 dessertspoon powdered human milk substitute in 28ml sterile water.

Feed 4:

1 dessertspoon powdered human milk substitute in 28ml sterile water (until 2400)

Day 2:

Every 2 hours

0800-1200:

1 teaspoon protein multivitamin concentrate mixed to a paste in cold water made up to 28ml with boiling water and 1 dessertspoon powdered human milk substitute.

1400-2400:

1 dessertspoon protein multivitamin concentrate mixed to a paste in cold
water made up to 28ml with boiling water and 1 dessertspoon powdered human milk substitute. With one feed of Vitamins at 2000 (2ml water + 0.1ml B12+ 0.1ml multivitamin solution) to prevent dehydration.

Day 3-7:

Every 2 hours

0800-2400:

1 dessertspoon protein multivitamin concentrate mixed to a paste in cold water made up to 28ml with boiling water and 1 dessertspoon powdered human milk substitute. With one feed of Vitamins at 2000 (2ml water + 0.1ml B12+ 0.1ml multivitamin solution) to prevent dehydration.

Week 2-3:

0800,1000,1200,1500,1800,2100,2400

1 dessertspoon protein multivitamin concentrate mixed to a paste in cold water made up to 28ml with boiling water and 1 dessertspoon powdered human milk substitute. With one feed of Vitamins (2ml water + 0.1ml B12+ 0.1ml multivitamin solution) at 2000 to prevent dehydration.

From day 19-20 : add 1 teaspoon of baby cereal (3 feeds a day !)

Week 4:

Every 3 hours – 0900(A),1200(B),1500(A),1800(B),2100(A),2400(B)

Feed A:

1 dessertspoon protein multivitamin concentrate mixed to a paste in cold water made up to 28ml with boiling water, 1 dessertspoon powdered human milk substitute and 1 dessertspoon of baby cereal. With one feed of Vitamins (2ml water + 0.1ml B12 + 0.1ml multivitamin solution) at 1800 to prevent dehydration.

Feed B:

1 dessertspoon protein multivitamin concentrate mixed to a paste in cold water made up to 28ml with boiling water and 1
dessertspoon powdered human milk substitute.

 

COMMON MARMOSET – HAND REARING – Timetable Example 2

WEEK 1 | WEEK 2 | WEEK 3 | WEEK 4 | WEEK 5 & 6 | WEEK 10

WEEK 1

FEEDING

First 24 hours : feed one drop every hour, nothing more than every 1 and 1/2 hours and eventually every 2 hours.

First give a very weak glucose solution 1/2 hour before you start with milk. 1 teaspoon water out of the kettle with a pinch of glucose.

  • Glucose feeds are given in-between feeds if stomach is not going properly
  • At first baby will only drink milk
  • Always feed in an upright position (ventral to ventral)
  • Mix 1 teaspoon of milk powder with 5 teaspoons of boiled water (5ml to 25ml)
  • First 4 days 50% water to 50% milk
  • Add a pinch of Bio-vita/Kalmag
  • Everything should be sterilized
  • Milk must never be reheated
  • Do not use milk that has been mixed for longer than 24 hours
  • Do not skip feeding times
  • Feed baby 0,5 ml-1ml of milk every 2 hours (Not 1,5ml-2ml every four hours)
  • Do not overfeed
  • An intake of 2-5 ml milk daily
  • Be careful baby may choke if milk is expressed to fast through syringe
  • If baby’s tummy is not going -add a pinch of Nestum for fiber
  • If baby is constipated add a drop of Mirracoat to the milk-be careful it might cause a runny tummy
  • Duphalac lactulose syrup is also given for constipation
  • Interflora -a pinch twice daily

CARE

  • Weigh and measure baby every week
  • Keep baby warm between 25-30 degrees C
  • Stimulate after each feed

Progress

  • A happy baby should sleep in-between feeds
  • If he is crawling around he is : not happy / not warm enough / too cold / too hot / hungry / maybe he has a wind (rub between shoulder blades) /
    wants to go to the bathroom

NEEDS

  • Greatest need is to cling and suckle
  • Carry him around as much as possible
  • Baby is very fragile especially first 5 days
  • Never sleep with your baby
  • Never expose him to draft or cold conditions
  • Never allow contact with different people (germs)

PROBLEMS YOU MAY ENCOUNTER

  • Most common is a runny tummy
  • A newborn dehydrates quickly
  • Signs of dehydration : Eyes will look dull and sunken. Pinch skin between shoulder blades. If it will not quickly fall back into place: trouble.
  • Give a drop of rice or potato water
  • Remember it is easy to overdose and cause constipation
  • If he is dehydrated give him Darrowped solution
  • Replace the milk mixture for 24 hours if baby is very weak

WEEK 2

FEEDING

  • Intake of milk will rise to about 8-12 ml when monkey is10 days old
  • Baby may be wanting more than 1 ml every 2 and 1/2 hours
  • They generally do not overeat. They will turn their heads away and refuse more food.

CARE

  • Baby should weigh and measure more every week
  • Baby still needs to be kept warm
  • Some babies start to urinate and defecate alone but keep on with stimulation

PROGRESS

  • Baby should still be sleeping most of the time
  • Will spend some time awake
  • Baby should crawl unsupported

NEEDS

  • Carry him around as much as possible
  • Allow contact with other monkeys
  • Not all adults will accept babies
  • By now he will know your voice and climb into your hand at feeding times

PROBLEMS YOU MAY ENCOUNTER

  • Baby must have a curly tail
  • Clinging tightly
  • Stools should be the consistancy of putty
  • He may sratch a bit due to the light : Mirracoat can correct this. Be careful with dose, it could cause a runny tummy.
  • If a baby starts breathing noisily due to the humidity level means that he has trouble with breathing : use normal humidifier (for human
    babies)
  • If baby is sneezing it could be flu : add Vitamin D3

WEEK 3

FEEDING

  • 20ml milk intake daily when monkey is 20 days old
  • Add a little Nestum to milk mixture plus a drop of Vitamin D3 (available from your chemist)
  • If baby starts sneezing it is a sign that baby needs Vitamin D3
  • He should be eating more and stretching out feeding times

CARE

  • Tummy should be working on its own but you could still help by stimulating him

PROGRESS

  • Baby should be awake for a much longer periods
  • He will show a lot of interest in everything you do and try to grab things
  • They start to sleep in their heated boxes and on their long-haired blankets
  • They will start taking food from your mouth

NEEDS

  • He will want to spend more time with you and may be stressed if you leave him
  • Put your baby on your head
  • DO NOT leave him alone because he will call for you
  • He will show first signs of playing. He may also suck his thumb.

WEEK 4

FEEDING

  • Spaced himself to 3-5 hourly feeds
  • He will need some Nestum in his milk
  • He should have Vitamin D3 twice weekly
  • Encourage him to lick some Purity/Yoghurt

CARE

  • He should have as much contact with other monkeys as possible
  • Do not leave him alone (stressful and afraid)
  • He should be sleeping in his heated box
  • Still needs to be kept warm

PROGRESS

  • He should be a lot more mobile now (crawling all over you)
  • Spend most of the time on your head
  • Becoming more playful and taking a great deal of interest in everything you do

NEEDS

  • Probably his greatest need at this stage is not to be left alone
  • NEEDS CONSTANT COMPANY

WEEKS 5 & 6

FEEDING

  • Baby should start feeding himself
  • Leave a bowl of Nestum and Purity
  • At first they make a big mess, but sooner or later they realise that it tastes good and start eating on their own
  • They will sample food from your mouth

PROGRESS

  • Baby is now very demanding and playful
  • They prefer to play on you and still spend most of their time on your head
  • They sleep quite a lot
  • Inbetween sleeps they will be very busy…
  • Give them something natural to play on, a branch
    or a big indoor plant

NEEDS

  • Do not leave him alone because it is frightening for him.
  • They rely so heavily on their parent for protection
  • It is completely unnatural for them. In the wild at this age they are constantly with their family

WEEK 10

  • Babies can be placed back with their parents or foster family. This is always a bit sad. However, it is truly the best thing to do. He can now learn about being a monkey. Some babies accept being put back, others hang on the side of the cage and cry to come out (very sad and stressful). Do not take him out again and eventually he will settle. Unfortunately, not all adults will accept babies.