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The emperor marmoset inhabits vast regions of Amazonian rainforests in southeastern Peru, northwestern Bolivia and northwestern Brazil.
Like most marmosets, this species has claws on all fingers and toes except the big toe, which has one nail.
They generally live in groups of 2 to 8 individuals and are sorted by sex and age so that the oldest female has the highest rank. These groups contain several sexually mature male members who, in addition to assisting with birth, help with rearing. The mother feeds her baby every 2-3 hours, after which she returns the baby to the father.
Emperor marmosets often live together with other marmoset species. The two species occupy a common set of territorial boundaries, exchange vocal calls and are able to coordinate their movements without seeing each other. This association is advantageous by aiding in detection and defense against predators and allowing for more efficient food gathering.