White-Handed Gibbon

Hylobates lar

Jungle Acrobats

The forelimbs of these agile apes are twice the length of their body, while the hind limbs are nearly 1 ½ their body length. They can reach speeds up to 31 mph and swing 30 feet. Gibbons use brachiation (arm over arm grasping) to move through the forest and when they move on the ground or a large limb they will walk upright with arms held high for balance.

Range: Thailand, Burma, northern Sumatra, and peninsular Malaysia in the deciduous and evergreen forests up to 6,500 feet.

Conservation Status: On the 2010 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, the white-handed gibbon is listed as Near Threatened.

Did you know?
Gibbons communicate through loud vocalizations including loud whoops that are typically a duet between males and females. Calling is usually initiated by the female. Males call with a high pitched “quaver song” and the females call with a plaintive swooping call, rising to a crescendo. Songs can be heard up to ½ mile away. They use grooming and facial expressions to communicate as well.