They live in small family groups of about 4 or 5 animals, sometimes more, consisting of a breeding pair and their youngest offspring.
The young will stay with their parents after they are weaned and will help their parents raise the newest young. Dominant female Golden Lion Tamarins physically discipline subordinate females so much that they will not come into season and will not breed. Parents have a strong pair-bond and will stay with each other for life. They have long narrow hands and fingers, which they use to probe for insects and other possible food sources that may be hiding under tree bark.