Whitecheeked gibbon

Nomascus leucogenys

TAXONOMY

Nomascus leucogenys (Ogilby, 1840), Muang Khi, Laos. Northern (N. l. leucogenys) and southern (N. l. siki) subspecies.

OTHER COMMON NAMES

French: Gibbon a favoris blancs; German: Weisswangen-Schopfgibbon.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

Size 18-25 in (48-64 cm); male weight 12.3 lb (5.6 kg), female 12.8 lb (5.8 kg). Male, black with white cheeks; female, pale yellow, yellow, or orange yellow, thin white face ring; infants, whitish buff, then black until puberty (for females). Born yellowy with reddish face, turning black at six months until puberty (females).

DISTRIBUTION

Southern China (Yunnan), northern and central Vietnam, and central Laos.

HABITAT

Tropical evergreen and semi-evergreen rainforest.

BEHAVIOR

Male emits booms and multi-modulated phrases; female gives rapid great calls, with rising notes, 21-27 notes, 13-15 seconds, male coda at end.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

Diet is mainly fruit, leaves, and buds, and a small amount of animal matter.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

Monogamous. Produce single young every three years or so.

CONSERVATION STATUS

Listed as Data Deficient by the IUCN; likely endangered.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS

Revered by locals, but still hunted for food and trade, with medicines in mind. ♦

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