Grey Gibbon

Hylobates funereus

The Latin name Hylobates translates to “Tree Walker”, an apt name for this exclusively arboreal primate. Like most primates, they are excellent climbers, moving by “brachiation”, extending their arms above their head to swing and propel their bodies.

Bornean Gibbon
A Bornean Gibbon – photo by Robert Risch

Gibbons are known for their speed, using their hands as hooks to leap over 30 feet between branches.
Grey Gibbon populations have dropped drastically over the last 50 years, falling to somewhere between 250,000 and 375,000 individuals. This is largely due to habitat loss as the forests of Borneo disappear to make space for plantations for palm oil, rubber, and logging. They are also sought after for the pet trade and are hunted for human consumption.


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