Taylor Swift arrives at Edinburgh Zoo

Posted 6 Jun 2024

Cotton-top tamarin twins with parents Elf and Zecca IMAGE: Amy Middleton 2024

Two critically endangered cotton-top tamarins have been born at the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland’s (RZSS) Edinburgh Zoo to first-time mum Elf and dad Zecca on Tuesday 4 June. Keepers at the wildlife conservation charity have named the tiny newborn monkeys ‘Taylor’ and ‘Swift’ ahead of the pop star’s highly anticipated performances in the capital this weekend.

Lorna Hughes, primate team leader at Edinburgh Zoo, said “It is incredibly exciting to welcome our newborn cotton-top tamarin twins, Taylor and Swift. Unfortunately, the species is one of the most endangered primates in the world due to extensive habitat loss, so this birth is really special. 

“Both parents will take turns caring for the youngsters, carrying them on their back for the first few months of their lives before they become more independent at around five months old.”

Edinburgh Zoo is also offering Taylor Swift The Eras Tour attendees 25% off zoo admission tickets from Friday 7 June – Sunday 9 June. More information is available at edinburghzoo.org.uk/taylor-swift  

Notes to Editors


Images and video:

Hi-res images and video available at we.tl/t-8jWNbsJRWw  

Images and video are free to use but must credit RZSS

Notes to editor:  

  • Edinburgh Zoo is home to four cotton-top tamarins – Elf, Zecca and their newborn twins Taylor and Swift
  • Cotton-top tamarins are classified as Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List. It is estimated that there are just 2,000 remaining in the wild
  • Newborn cotton-top tamarins are 10cm long from head to tail and weigh just 42g
  • The species is found in small, forested areas of North-western Columbia
  • Cotton-top tamarins usually give birth to twins

About the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (rzss.org.uk)

  • The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) is a wildlife conservation charity with a bold vision: a world which protects, values and loves nature
  • Edinburgh Zoo and Highland Wildlife Park are gateways to the natural world through which people can experience nature, learn about the challenges facing wildlife and discover how we harness our expertise in conservation science and animal care alongside the unique power of the RZSS family – our teams, supporters and partners – to save animals from extinction

For further information, please contact comms@rzss.org.uk