Pileated Gibbon Hylobates pileatus

Pileated Gibbon Hylobates pileatus

Pileated Gibbon Hylobates pileatus


Cambodia; Laos, Thailand

Pileated gibbons sing in regional accents and form close bonds with their partners and children. Endangered in #Laos #Cambodia #Thailand by #hunting and #deforestation for #palmoil and #timber Boycott brands destroying their home #Boycott4Wildlife

The Pileated Gibbon is listed as Endangered as they are suspected to have experienced a reduction of more than 50% over a time frame of three generations (45 years) in the past. Most populations are not yet secured in protected areas, and the main threats are habitat loss due to logging, agricultural conversion, hydroelectric development and new human settlements (W. Brockelman pers. Comm.)

IUCN Red List

The Pileated Gibbon belongs to the genus Hylobates. The word Hylobates means ‘Forest Walker’ in Greek. The gibbons in this genus are known for the white circle of fur around their faces. They are known to communicate in species-specific song when defining territory or attracting mates. They sing in regional accents to each other, have long swinging arms, inquisitive natures and superior acrobatic skills, they spend most of their lives high up in the tree-tops.

The Pileated Gibbons form strong monogomous bonds with their partners and children and live in moist, seasonal evergreen and mixed deciduous-evergreen forests. They have been recorded living to about 1,500 m in Cambodia and to around 1,200 m in Thailand. This species is similar to the Lar Gibbon in diet and general ecology and they eat mostly fruits, shoots, and some immature leaves, as well as insects (Srikosamatara 1980, 1984). Researchers find the species somewhat shyer and more elusive than the Lar Gibbon (W. Brockelman pers. Comm.)

This species is threatened by both hunting, primarily for subsistence, and severe habitat fragmentation and degradation (Duckworth et al. 1999, Traeholt et al. 2005). In Thailand, all populations are now within protected conservation areas and the era of logging and slash-and-burn agriculture (Brockelman 1983) is now mostly over.

Nevertheless, severe encroachment has occurred in eastern Khao Yai Park and other major protected areas, and subsistence hunting by minor forest product collectors is still uncontrolled (Phoonjampa and Brockelman 2008). In Cambodia, however, habitat destruction is a more immediate threat than poaching, especially in remote areas. Most populations are not yet secured in protected areas, and the main threats are habitat loss due to logging, agricultural conversion, hydroelectric development and new human settlements (W. Brockelman pers. Comm.)

How to easily identify gibbons by Noah RNS Shepherd
How to easily identify gibbons by Noah RNS Shepherd

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Further Information

ICUN endangered logo

Brockelman, W, Geissmann, T., Timmins, T. & Traeholt, C. 2020. Hylobates pileatus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2020: e.T10552A17966665. https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2020-2.RLTS.T10552A17966665.en. Downloaded on 08 February 2021.

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Published by Palm Oil Detectives

Hi, I’m Palm Oil Detective’s Editor in Chief. Palm Oil Detectives is partly a consumer website about palm oil in products and partly an online community for writers, scientists, conservationists, artists and musicians to showcase their work and express their love for endangered species. I have a strong voice for creatures great and small threatened by deforestation. With our collective power we can shift the greed of the retail and industrial agriculture sectors and through strong campaigning we can stop them cutting down forests. Be bold! Be courageous! Join the #Boycott4Wildlife and stand up for the animals with your supermarket choices

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